When UNC chancellor Holden Thorp fired former head coach Butch Davis last week, he explained that the nine NCAA allegations against the university had tarnished its reputation, part of the “cumulative effect” that led to Davis’ release.
But in a slightly humorous turn of events, Thorp has also apparently committed an NCAA violation.
The violation isn’t really anything serious in nature, but given the, well, “timing” of the whole thing, it’s a little bit embarrassing.
In a press release handed out by the UNC today, Thorp admitted that he committed a secondary NCAA violation when speaking to the Charlotte Observer and the Raleigh News and Observer about Davis offering an athletic scholarship to his son, Drew Davis, without consulting Thorp or athletic director Dick Baddour.
Under NCAA bylaws, university officials are not allowed to address prospective student-athletes by name until they’ve signed a Letter of Intent.
Below is the release:
“Yesterday I honestly answered a specific question asked by a reporter about a scholarship offer to a prospective student-athlete. I am advised that acknowledging the scholarship offer was an NCAA Level II Secondary violation, which I regret. In accordance with NCAA policy the University has voluntarily reported this to the ACC.”
Background: By NCAA definition (bylaw 19.02.2.1), a secondary violation is one that “that is isolated or inadvertent in nature, provides or is intended to provide only a minimal recruiting, competitive or other advantage and does not include any significant impermissible benefit (including, but not limited to, an extra benefit, recruiting inducement, preferential treatment or financial aid).” Most secondary cases are self-reported either by the institution or through a conference office.
Again, not a huge deal, but just a little bit ironic.