Thirty-three athletes were found to have been paid for work that they did not complete over the course of summer employment, leading to a fine and one year probation for TCU.
The athletes, unnamed but reported as being football and men’s and women’s basketball players, were not clocking out from summer jobs, leading to $20,000 in unearned payments over a four year period. 22 of the 33 athletes were found to have competed while ineligible according to the NCAA.
TCU reported the violations to the NCAA after discovering them — though the university has declined to say how they found out. The Division I Committee on Infractions responded by issuing one year of probation, a $47,148 fine (includes a self-imposed penalty of $19,796, plus an additional 10% of the money it received for participate in the first round of the 2018 Division I Men’s Basketball Championship ($27,352), and a one-year show-cause order for the former coach. During that period, any NCAA member school employing him must show cause why he should not have restrictions on athletically related activity. The coach in question is former Swimming and Diving coach Sam, Busch, who resigned in February of last year, and was deemed to have exceeded the maximum allowed coaches on staff. Additionally, Busch and his staff exceeded limits regarding practice time for his program.
The NCAA classified the violations as the Level II variety, meaning they did not involve “substantial impermissible benefit” or a “substantial recruiting, competitive or other advantage.” Basically, if it doesn’t happen again in the probationary period, there will be no long term consequences.
Both Chancellor Victor Boschini and Athletic Director Jeremiah Donati responded to the findings In a written statement. Boschini stated “I’m proud of TCU’s culture of compliance that led to these issues being identified, promptly disclosed, and corrected. I also am thankful for our team who successfully collaborated to ensure that we not only resolved this issue but continue to send a message of strong ethical leadership at TCU.”
Donati added “we are thankful for the committee hearing our position and providing us an equitable result. The process worked.”
The TL;DR of this is that the athletics department was not involved, these were not illegally arranged jobs, and that as soon as the administration on campus discovered something fishy in the air, they stepped in and reported it. Not a great look for TCU of course, but their response was swift and commendable. There has been no clarification offered as to whether any of the implicated athletes’ future eligibility is in question.
We will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.