Lowlights of Lane Kiffin‘s one year in Knoxville keep coming back to bite Tennessee right in the keister.
The NCAA’s Committee on Infractions announced in a release Friday additional penalties levied against Tennessee dating back to recruiting violations committed by former Vols assistant Willie Mack Garza. Per the release, those penalties include:
- A two-year extension of the probation issued during the 2011 infractions case
- A reduction in official visits from 51 to 47 for the 2012-13 academic year
- A reduction in evaluation days during the spring 2012 evaluation period (completed)
- No complementary tickets to prospective student-athletes during unofficial visits for the first two conference games of the 2013 season
The university met with the COI last month for an expedited penalty hearing on an agreed upon summary disposition report submitted this past June.
“We will finally close the chapter on the prior actions of members of a previous football coaching staff,” UT athletic director Dave Hart said in a statement. “We have significantly strengthened our culture of compliance at Tennessee and will continue to do so. We disagree with additional penalties for a matter we believed should have been part of the previous case. We will now move forward.”
Garza left Tennessee to take an assistant coaching job at USC under Kiffin. He’s since resigned from that position in the wake of more allegations connecting him to scouting service owner Willie Lyles. As a surprise to absolutely no one, Tennessee’s additional penalties come courtesy of the relationship Garza had with Lyles.
According to the release, “In the facts agreed upon by the University, the NCAA and Garza, during the summer of 2009, Garza reimbursed Will Lyles, an individual associated with prospect Lache Seastrunk, for airfare and hotel expenses associated with an unofficial visit for Seastrunk and his mother to the University. Because Lyles arranged the trip for Seastrunk, the NCAA classified him as a booster of the University.”
Seastrunk and Lyles have been connected to possible NCAA violations at Oregon. Seastrunk has since transferred to Baylor.