Adrian Klemm is arguably UCLA’s most important assistant coach, and now the NCAA has hammered him with a two-year show-cause penalty and a $5,000 fine for recruiting violations. In March of 2014, Klemm arranged training services and housing for two recruits, totaling $2,400 that he paid for. Obviously that’s far from legal.
The NCAA Committee on Infractions claims Klemm brazenly violated rules when he arranged for two recruits to spend three weeks at a training facility in Scottsdale, Arizona. The facility was run by a former NFL player who Klemm is friends with.
The NCAA classified the violations as “Level II,” or falling within the second-most serious tier. Klemm’s ex-girlfriend reportedly tipped off the NCAA to the violations.
Klemm claimed he thought the benefits were permissible because the recruits in question had signed Letters of Intent with UCLA. Frankly, that’s about as weak an excuse as you could offer. Klemm is considered UCLA’s top recruiter, there is no way he is that ignorant of the rules concerning recruits and signees.
Klemm is UCLA’s offensive line coach and associate head coach, and made $760,000 last season, which made him the third-highest paid assistant in the Pac-12. While he’s not regarded as much of an offensive line coach, Klemm’s recruiting prowess is substantial. That might make Bruins head coach Jim Mora hesitant to fire him, but he should.
The 39-year-old assistant is now under a show-cause order until September 15, 2018, and if he stays at UCLA the school will have to explain to the NCAA why it continues to employ him. UCLA also must submit a plan for oversight of his activities.
I’m not the only one puzzled by Klemm’s explanation or the fact that he’s still employed by the Bruins:
Klemm has long been viewed as a guy who “operates in the margins” of the rules. The appearance of that alone was bad for UCLA. Now that he’s actually committed a major violation and been publicly blasted by the NCAA, there is no reason for Mora to continue employing him.