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One Year After Postseason Ban, OSU Hoops Still Awaiting NCAA Appeal

An update on other similar cases and why OSU’s appeal has real teeth.

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A year ago on Saturday, the NCAA’s Committee on Infractions dropped a hammer the size of the panhandle in announcing that Oklahoma State — one of the many programs implicated in the FBI scandal that uncovered nefarious doings in college hoops — had been banned from postseason play in 2020-21.

OSU immediately declared it would appeal the heavy-handed punishment, which by virtue of the appeals process means that — so long as the appeal is unanswered — OSU is eligible for postseason play. If the Committee on Infractions doesn’t respond until 2050, OSU will go about its business with the cloud of the ban looming over its program.

A lot has changed in a year, however. And while no response from the NCAA on OSU’s case means that this continues to hang around the program, context surrounding OSU’s case has given it credibility to successfully win its appeal or, at least, plead down and chop off the postseason ban.

Here are the circumstances surrounding other programs and why OSU, still awaiting word from the NCAA, should feel good about things nearly a year after the punishment was first handed down. (There’s still many schools that were ensnared in the FBI scandal awaiting formal punishment, remember, including Kansas, Arizona, NC State, Auburn, LSU and others.)

As a quick refresher: OSU received a postseason ban, three years probation, and significant recruiting restrictions in addition to a fine and a percentage owed from the budget to the NCAA. The punishment stems from former assistant Lamont Evans allegedly accepting between $18,150 and $46,000 in bribery money.


South Carolina

Punishment from Committee on Infractions: Two-year probation, minor recruiting restrictions, 10-year show-cause penalty for Lamont Evans.

Date of punishment: Feb. 25, 2021

Alleged wrongdoing: Assistant coach Lamont Evans (prior to his time at OSU) allegedly accepted between $3,300 and $5,800 in bribes from someone associated with an agent.


USC

Punishment from Committee on Infractions: Two-year probation, minor recruiting restrictions. (USC also self-imposed a reduction in scholarships, recruiting days and total official visits.) Bland was given a three-year show-cause penalty.

Date of punishment: April 15, 2021

Alleged wrongdoing: Assistant coach Tony Bland allegedly accepted a $4,100 bribe to exert his influence over student-athletes.


Auburn

Punishment: TBD

School action: Self-imposed postseason ban

Alleged wrongdoing: Assistant coach Chuck Person is accused of accepting $91,000 in bribery money to steer players to a specific individual whom he believed was involved in finance. The person he later discovered was a cooperator with the government working undercover to reveal misdeeds in college basketball.


Arizona

Punishment: TBD (Facing five Level I violations)

School action: Self-imposed postseason ban

Alleged wrongdoing: Former assistant Book Richardson allegedly accepted $20,000 in bribes to steer UA players to certain financial advisors, among other potential improprieties at the program (of which there are allegedly many).

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