INDIANAPOLIS -- Missouri's basketball team was placed on
three years' probation Wednesday for NCAA recruiting violations but
avoided a ban on postseason play.
The infractions committee took away one scholarship next year
and two in 2006-07 and limited all basketball coaches to recruiting
on campus until November 2005.
"We felt the off-campus ban would be a significant statement on
the violations and removes the criticism of punishing current
student-athletes," committee chairman Thomas Yeager said in a
The penalty prevents coaches from visiting high schools, making
home visits, attending summer camps and even giving speeches at
high-school awards banquets. Yeager said the ban had not been
imposed since 1990 when Illinois' basketball team was punished.
Missouri chancellor Brady Deaton said the school would not
Coach Quin Snyder said he hoped the Tigers would still be
competitive in recruiting because of the school's new $75 million
"I still think we're going to be able to be successful in
recruiting," he said. "We just need to get people to come to
Columbia and see it."
The committee found the Tigers violated NCAA recruiting rules
from 1999-2003 and rejected the school's explanation that most of
the violations were inadvertent.
"The men's basketball staff had the benefit of extensive rules
education and compliance procedures," the committee said.
``Nevertheless, the men's basketball staff took risks and pushed
the limits with respect to recruiting legislation, particularly
while recruiting top prospects."
The case came to light when former point guard Ricky Clemons
accused ex-assistant coach Tony Harvey of paying him $250. Harvey
The committee did not mention Clemons or Harvey by name in its
report but acknowledged that an assistant coach violated NCAA rules
by buying meals, providing transportation and illegally contacting
recruits and their families.
"The charge of being paid $250 on one occasion, we bandied that
about a great deal," committee chairman Thomas Yeager said in a
conference call. "But we felt the information didn't rise to the
level we could make a finding on it.''
In addition, the Tigers must reduce the number of official paid
visits from 12 to nine this year and next year although Missouri
could delay that penalty by one year.
Additional punishments include a public reprimand and censure.
The committee also accepted the school's self-imposed sanctions that include not renegotiating Snyder's contract until