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             === Miami receives notice of allegations from NCAA ===
 
 Coral  Gables, FL (Sports Network) - Miami-Florida has been accused of a "lack
 of institutional control" violation, according to the Miami Herald.
 
 "The  University of  Miami deeply  regrets and  takes full  responsibility for
 those  NCAA violations that are based on fact and are corroborated by multiple
 individuals  and/or  documentation," Miami  president Donna  Shalala said in a
 statement  Tuesday night.  "We have  already self-imposed  a bowl  ban for  an
 unprecedented  two-year period, forfeited the opportunity to participate in an
 ACC championship game, and withheld student-athletes from competition.
 
 "Over  the two and  a half years since the University of Miami first contacted
 the  NCAA  enforcement staff  about allegations of  rules violations, the NCAA
 interviewed  dozens of witnesses, including current and former Miami employees
 and student-athletes, and received thousands of requested documents and emails
 from the University.
 
 "Yet  despite  our efforts to aid  the investigation, the NCAA acknowledged on
 February  18, 2013  that it  violated its  own policies  and procedures  in an
 attempt  to  validate the allegations  made by a  convicted felon. Many of the
 allegations included in the Notice of Allegations remain unsubstantiated."
 
 The school provided the following information about the investigation itself:
 
 -  Many of  the charges  brought forth  are based  on the  word of  a man  who
 made   a  fortune  by  lying.  The  NCAA  enforcement  staff  acknowledged  to
 the   University  that   if  Nevin   Shapiro,  a   convicted  con   man,  said
 something   more  than  once,  it  considered  the  allegation  "corroborated"
 -- an argument which is both ludicrous and counter to legal practice.
 
 -  Most  of  the  sensationalized  media  accounts  of  Shapiro's  claims  are
 found  nowhere  in the  Notice  of  Allegations.  Despite their  efforts  over
 two   and   a  half  years,   the  NCAA   enforcement  staff  could  not  find
 evidence    of   prostitution,   expensive   cars   for   players,   expensive
 dinners  paid  for  by  boosters,  player  bounty  payments,  rampant  alcohol
 and  drug  use, or  the  alleged  hundreds of  thousands  of  dollars in  cash
 and   gifts  given   to  student-athletes,  as  reported  in  the  media.  The
 fabricated story played well - the facts did not.
 
 -  The  NCAA  enforcement  staff  failed, even  after  repeated  requests,  to
 interview   many  essential  witnesses  of  great  integrity  who  could  have
 provided   first-hand   testimony,  including,  unbelievably,  Paul  Dee,  who
 has   since   passed  away,   but  who  served   as  Miami  Athletic  Director
 during   many  of   the   years   that  violations   were   alleged  to   have
 occurred.   How  could  a  supposedly  thorough  and  fair  investigation  not
 even include the Director of Athletics?
 
 -  Finally,  we  believe  the  NCAA was  responsible  for  damaging  leaks  of
 unsubstantiated   allegations  over  the  course  of  the  investigation.  Let
 me  be  clear  again:  for  any rule  violation  -  substantiated  and  proven
 with   facts  -  that  the  University,  its  employees,  or  student-athletes
 committed,  we have  been  and  should be  held  accountable.  We have  worked
 hard   to  improve  our  compliance  oversight,  and  we  have  already  self-
 imposed  harsh  sanctions.  We  deeply  regret any  violations,  but  we  have
 suffered enough.
 
 The  next step  in the process is the sanctions phase, where Miami's penalties
 will be decided.
 
 Miami's  football program  had come  under  fire after  reports surfaced  that
 players  were  given gifts and  extra benefits  from Shapiro, now serving jail
 time for running an alleged Ponzi scheme.
 
 The NCAA's investigation began in August 2011.
 
 The  process dragged on and the NCAA acknowledged that some mistakes were made
 by  its  own enforcement  department. According to  the external review, staff
 enforcement  members  knowingly circumvented  legal advice to engage Shapiro's
 criminal  defense attorney; violated the internal NCAA policy of legal counsel
 only  being retained  and  monitored  by the  legal  staff; paid  insufficient
 attention  to  the concern  that engaging the  criminal defense attorney could
 constitute  an  inappropriate manipulation of  the bankruptcy process; and did
 not  sufficiently consider  the membership's understanding about the limits of
 the enforcement staff's investigative powers.
 
 The  NCAA  said the  information gained through  the bankruptcy proceedings or
 other  evidence derived  from  that process  will  not be  used  in the  Miami
 investigative record.
 
 
 
 02/20 00:59:07 ET

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