Compiled from Times wires
© St. Petersburg Times, published December 14, 2000
Southern Methodist given probation again
DALLAS -- SMU was placed on two years' probation by the NCAA on Wednesday, just as the school was recovering from being the only major college football program to get the "death penalty."
The NCAA cited recruiting violations in broadening the penalties already imposed by the university. The governing body said an SMU coach engaged in academic fraud and made payments to students two years ago.
The NCAA did not place any restrictions on TV appearances or eligibility for bowl games.
"We felt given the nature of the violations and the extent -- they were recruiting violations, so we felt there were additional recruiting penalties that ought to be augmented somewhat," said Jack Friedenthal, chair of the NCAA infractions committee and a George Washington law professor.
Athletic director Jim Copeland said he was relieved the NCAA had ruled on the 2-year-old case and he had no objections to the latest action.
"We certainly knew they could add sanctions," he said. "These are things we have lived with for two years and can do again."
According to the NCAA, the most serious violation concerned former defensive line coach Steve Malin. He is accused of arranging to pay a student to take the American College Testing exam so a freshman recruit could attend SMU in the 1998 school year.
Malin also allegedly had improper contact with other athletes and offered improper inducements to them totaling $650 in four years.
In addition to self-imposed actions taken by the university last December, the NCAA also:
Cut the number of official campus visits by high school recruits by 10 in addition to the eight visits cut by the university. SMU will be limited to 38 out of a total of 56 visits for the 2001-02 academic year.
Extended a university sanction allowing one less coach to be involved in football recruiting until 2001-02. The university imposed the one-coach reduction in 1999-00, but not this past season.
Ordered the university to vacate the team's 1998 record and 10 games in which a student who engaged in academic fraud played. The record change must be reflected in all university records.
A year ago, the university imposed sanctions on the football program. The school cut four scholarships this academic year and four more next year for a total of eight, after discovering Malin's recruiting violations.
SMU's football program had just begun to rebound after having one winning season since the NCAA levied the "death penalty" against the university in 1987.
After learning that a banned booster paid 13 players thousands of dollars, the program that produced Doak Walker, Don Meredith and Eric Dickerson was forced to disband for one year. The school also sat out 1988.
NEBRASKA: Defensive end Kyle Vanden Bosch won the Vincent dePaul Draddy Award as college football's top scholar-athlete.
NORTH CAROLINA: James Webster, a defensive assistant at East Carolina for the past six seasons, has been hired as a defensive assistant coach, new coach John Bunting said.
W. MICHIGAN: Gary Darnell ended speculation about his future as coach by agreeing to a five-year contract. The new deal replaces the remaining two years of his current contract.
Darnell, who was interim head coach at Florida in 1989, had been a candidate for coaching positions at Oklahoma State, North Carolina, Missouri and Rutgers.