Lather, rinse, repeat, right?
Late last month, reports indicated that Auburn had taken a pair of assistant coaches off the recruiting trail, with the intimation being that, once again, the football program had found itself in the NCAA’s crosshairs. Less than a month later, that appears to be exactly the case.
According to Yahoo! Sports‘ Pat Forde, and citing multiple sources, “NCAA investigators have been working for weeks on potential improprieties involving Auburn recruits, players, coaches, representatives of the school’s athletic interests and third parties.” And the assistants on head coach (for now) Gene Chizik’s staff under scrutiny for the past several weeks? Ace recruiters Trooper Taylor and Curtis Luper.
The NCAA’s latest peek into the program revolves around 2012 signee Jovon Robinson, although al.com is reporting that the investigation goes beyond just a single player.
In August, AU confirmed that Robinson was being held out of summer camp as part of an academic investigation into allegations that his high school transcript had been falsified. Less than a week later, Robinson was ruled ineligible by the NCAA after it was determined that a Memphis Wooddale High School guidance counselor had indeed altered the transcript.
Robinson is not currently enrolled at Auburn.
Forde’s report did not state the specific reason why the NCAA is looking into Auburn football other than the program’s recruitment of Robinson. You can connect the dots, however, as to which direction this probe is headed as it pertains to the falsified transcript and the two AU coaches’ involvement in Robinson’s recruitment.
Of course, this is not the first time the NCAA has come sniffing around The Plains during Chizik’s time at the school. Infamously, the NCAA investigated allegations of impermissible benefits received by Heisman Trophy winner Cam Newton, concluding in October of 2011 that “the enforcement staff “has not substantiated any… violations.” Additionally, the football program was investigated in relation to damning accusations made by former players during an HBO “real Sports” episode; for its recruiting practices; and for the “Tiger Prowl” recruiting caravan.
The university has yet to receive a formal letter of investigation from the NCAA, al.com wrote.
Chizik has been under fire in general the past two seasons and specifically this year for the Tigers’ subpar on-field performance that’s morphed into laughably abysmal in 2012. The off-field situations will do nothing but exacerbate the pressure on Chizik and will, in all likelihood, be the final nail in his AU coaching coffin.