RALEIGH — For the first time, the NCAA gave a clear picture of how it will proceed with the college basketball programs involved in the recently completed federal investigations into corruption in the sport.
Stan Wilcox, the NCAA vice president for regulatory affairs, told CBS Sports on Wednesday that at least six Division I programs will receive a Notice of Allegations with Level I violations this summer and two “high-profile” programs would receive their NOA by early July.
“There’s even another group of cases that we’re still working on,” Wilcox told CBS Sports at the National Association of Collegiate Directors of Athletics convention in Orlando, Fla.
“The main thing is that we’re up and ready. We’re moving forward and you’ll see consequences.”
N.C. State was one of four schools that was found to have been defrauded by former Adidas executive Jim Gatto and aspiring agent Christian Dawkins during an October trial in New York. According to the FBI investigation, and testimony during the trial, the family of Dennis Smith Jr. was paid at least $40,000 to pick N.C. State during the recruiting process in 2015.
According to testimony during the trial, former N.C. State assistant coach Orlando Early was involved in getting the money from Gatto to Smith’s father. Under NCAA rules, a coach paying or helping pay a recruit would qualify as a Level I violation.
After two years undercover, the FBI found members of top NCAA basketball programs involved in corrupt bribery schemes.
Smith played one season at N.C. State, in 2016-17, before leaving for the NBA. Early was dismissed when head coach Mark Gottfried was fired before the end of that same season.
Wilcox didn’t mention any specific schools in his comments on Wednesday. Kansas, Louisville and Miami were also found to have been defrauded during the initial trial. Former assistant coaches at Arizona, Auburn, Oklahoma State and Southern California pled guilty to conspiracy to commit bribery in a separate trial in New York this spring.
N.C. State has previously acknowledged that it has sent all the information regarding Smith’s recruitment that it shared with the FBI to the NCAA. N.C. State chancellor Randy Woodson said in January that the school had been told by the NCAA it would be in a holding pattern until the completion of the federal trials.
Wilcox’s comments were the first made publicly by an NCAA official that included a timetable or indicated the severity of the allegations. Level I allegations are the most severe in the NCAA rulebook and can lead to a postseason ban, scholarship reductions and/or a significant fine.
“So now that’s it over, we’re going to be moving forward with a number of Level I cases that will help people realize that, ‘Yeah, the enforcement staff was in a position to move forward,’ ” Wilcox said.
The NOA is the second step in any major NCAA investigation and triggers the punishment phase. The school gets a chance to respond to the NOA before it meets with the Committee on Infractions.
It typically takes about nine months to a year to receive the NCAA’s final ruling after the NOA is delivered.
The NCAA has been criticized for how it handled recent high-profile cases involving Penn State and North Carolina. Wilcox, a former athletic director at Florida State and deputy AD at Duke, was hired in August 2018 to help the NCAA improve its regulatory processes.
“It’s a great opportunity for the enforcement staff, the committee on infractions, as well as our whole community to now try to … put things back where they need to be,” Wilcox said.