Move over Ohio State. Make room Oregon and North Carolina. Y’all could have yourselves some additional company atop the NCAA hot seat in the not-too-distant future.
According t0 the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, a police investigation into the Columbus (Ga.) Parks and Recreation Department has turned up what could be potential issues for the eligibility of two Georgia student-athletes — one football and one basketball player.
The paper writes that an unauthorized bank account controlled by a pair of top Department officials was used to pay for flights to and from Los Angeles for Jarvis Jones, who was a member of a city-funded, Nike-sponsored AAU basketball team at the time. Jones, expected to start at linebacker this season, began his collegiate career at USC in 2009 before transferring back to his home state last year.
The total cost of the four flights to and from Atlanta/Los Angeles was $828.40, and came after Jones signed with USC in February of 2009.
NCAA rules do not allow amateur sports organizations to provide expenses for athletes in excess of actual and necessary travel, room and board, apparel and equipment for competition and practice.
A Columbus PD official told the paper that “the NCAA was “aware of the investigation, allegations and actions of the individuals we had under investigation.”
“We are aware of it and will do our due diligence in looking into the matter,” UGA athletic spokesman Claude Felton told the Athens Banner-Herald Sunday.
The NCAA will not confirm or deny that they are in the midst of an investigation into the situation involving Jones.