Precede MISSION, Kan.
Mar. 04, 1987
LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) _ Texas Tech's football program was put on probation for one year and penalized three scholarships for the 1988-89 season for violating recruiting rules, including cash offers to athletes, officials said Tuesday.
The probation will begin immediately because university officials said they would not appeal. Only 22 football players at Texas Tech may receive financial aid in the 1988-89 academic year, the NCAA said.
The school becomes the third Southwest Conference school now on NCAA probation. Last Wednesday, Southern Methodist was stripped of its 1987 season and part of the next because of repeated violations. Texas Christian gets off probation next year.
Athletic Director T. Jones said two Tech boosters who participated in illegal reruiting would be dissociated from the athletic department.
In its report, the NCAA listed 13 violations of recruiting provisions, one violation of ethical conduct legislation and one violation of compliance rules.
But the report also said the infractions committee ''took into account the cooperative, non-defensive attitude exhibited by the university in responding to the allegations.''
The report also noted that Tech had never previously been involved in violations. It said that those that occurred in 1982-84 were in response to ''an excessively competitive environment'' in the SWC.
The NCAA said the recruiting violations included inducements to prospective players, none of whom ever attended the school.
The inducements ranged from providing $80 to $300 in cash and groceries to an offer of a pair of ostrich-skin boots and a trip to Las Vegas, Nev. Other violations included providing free meals and transportation to prospective players, according to the NCAA.
On one occasion, the NCAA said, a former assistant coach requested and received about $1,050 in cash from a representative of the university's athletics interests and another individual while recruiting two prospects.
''This is really a very black day in athletics at Texas Tech,'' school president Lauro Cavazos said. ''There was no organized pattern or plan discovered to cheat. There was no slush fund or hidden funds. No one who was alleged to be illegally recurited ever played a down at Texas Tech.''
In accordance with NCAA policy, the report did not name coaches, assistant coaches or students.
Texas Tech officials appeared before the NCAA Committee on Infractions Feb. 15 in Coronado, Calif., to face allegations of recruiting violations between 1982-84.
Allegations against Tech involved ex-coach Jerry Moore, four assistants and six recruits, according to information made public through the Texas Open Records Act. None of the coaches involved are still at the school.
Moore was fired in 1985 after compiling a 16-37-2 record in five seasons. Assistants Jim Bates, Tom Wilson, Richard Ritchie and Rodney Allison left before 1985.
Chris Pryor of Converse Judson High School allegedly was offered a pair of ostrich-skin boots and a trip to Las Vegas, and he and high school teammate Norman Lambert allegedly were given cash after signing letters of intent with Texas Tech.
Pryor said in October he also was provided rental cars and hotel lodging. Neither Pryor nor Lambert ever enrolled at Texas Tech. Pryor is now at Howard Payne University in Brownwood, Texas.
It also was alleged that money was given to Ronald Morris, who ended up playing for Southern Methodist, and Morris' mother. Morris allegedly received $250 in cash on one occasion, as much as $40 on Tech visits to Morris' home and a red sweatsuit with the university's logo.
''I never asked for anything,'' Morris said. ''It was all given to me.''
Another SMU player, Bobby Watters, allegedly was provided meals and transportation during his visit to Texas Tech.
It also has been alleged that a Texas Tech official offered to arrange for Watters to sell his complimentary football tickets for $100 each, and that he offered to arrange employment in Lubbock for Watters' girlfriend during his enrollment.
The six-member infractions committee is chaired by University of Wisconsin law professor Frank Remington.
''It is our intent to accept the penalties and not appeal,'' said Bob Swayze, Tech faculty representative. ''I believe Texas Tech has learned from this experience we must develop and maintain better commuinications in all levels of the department of intercollegiate athletics.''
Jones, the athletic director, said the school had asked the two boosters ''to remove any further relations with Texas Tech in any way shape and form, especially athletics.''
The boosters were indentified in the report as Lubbock businessmen Charles and Danny Whisenhunt. Both provided illegal payments to players Tech was recuriting, according to the NCAA report.