On October 22, 2019, the NCAA announced the conclusion of a negotiated resolution with the University of South Carolina regarding a Level II violation involving the football program that occurred during spring 2018. Once these violations came to light, the University of South Carolina engaged in a thorough, cooperative investigation with the NCAA enforcement staff.
The details of the violations include:
- In May of 2018, an impermissible off-campus contact occurred involving an assistant coach and a sophomore prospective student-athlete.
- 13 impermissible text messages were sent to the prospective student-athlete from the assistant coach from January to June 2018.
Corrective actions taken by the university and agreed upon by the NCAA enforcement staff are:
- The entire football coaching staff is prohibited from any off campus recruiting activity for the first two weeks of the 2019 spring evaluation period.
- A reduction of 12 evaluation days for the 2018-19 academic year.
- The entire football coaching staff is prohibited from any off campus recruiting activity for the first four weeks of the 2019 fall evaluation period.
- A restriction in telephone and text communication with prospective student-athletes for a two-week period beginning September 1, 2019.
- In May 2019, as conducted multiple times in the past, one-on-one education was provided to the head coach and staff regarding NCAA contact and evaluation legislation.
- USC has ceased recruiting the involved prospective student-athlete and the prospective student-athlete is ineligible for competition at USC.
- The head coach is limited to off-campus contact during the fall 2019 contact period to 10 prospective student-athletes.
- The Athletics Department has been fined $10,000 and the football program will be on a one-year probationary period. The probationary period does not include any restrictions on regular season or post-season competition.
“The assistant coach’s conduct was contrary to our core University values and will not be tolerated at our institution. It is essential that our coaches and student-athletes demonstrate an unwavering commitment to compliance with all values and standards of the NCAA and the University.” – Robert L. Caslen, Jr., President of the University of South Carolina
“Once our compliance staff learned of the violations in question, we conducted a thorough internal review and worked closely with the NCAA in the handling of this matter. We are diligent in our compliance efforts, both proactively and reactively. When issues arise that counter our compliance culture, we are quick to respond with corrective measures.” – Ray Tanner, South Carolina Director of Athletics.
“As the head coach of the football program at the University of South Carolina, I am responsible for all facets of the program. I recognize that a violation occurred within my program and I have taken substantial corrective actions to ensure that similar instances do not continue to occur.” –Will Muschamp, Head Football Coach
The University of South Carolina will continue to maintain a compliant athletics department through its comprehensive education and extensive monitoring programs.