The NCAA Division II Committee on Infractions (“COI” or “Committee”) is an independent administrative body comprised of individuals from the NCAA Division II membership and the public charged with deciding infractions cases involving member institutions and their staffs. This case involved improper certification violations at Bluefield State College (“BSC” or “institution”). The underlying violations occurred largely due to compliance-related shortcomings in staffing and systems. Those shortcomings demonstrated that BSC failed to monitor its certification process. COI considered this case through the cooperative summary disposition process in which BSC and the NCAA enforcement staff agreed to the primary facts and violations as fully set forth in the summary disposition report (“SDR”). COI proposed additional penalties for BSC, which the institution accepted. Therefore, institution has no opportunity to appeal.
The Committee concluded that BSC committed the following violations:
Violations of NCAA Division II Manual Bylaws 22.214.171.124.1, 126.96.36.199 and 188.8.131.52 (2017-18); 12.1.1, 184.108.40.206.3, 14.2, 14.2.2 and 14.5.1 (2017-18 and 2018-19); 14.12.1 and 16.8.1 (2017-18 through 2019-20); 220.127.116.11 and 18.104.22.168 (2018-19); 22.214.171.124 and 126.96.36.199 (2018-19 and 2019-20); and 188.8.131.52 (2019-20)
The institution and NCAA enforcement staff agreed that during the 2017-18 through 2019-20 academic years, the institution improperly certified 21 student-athletes in eight sports as eligible for competition, which resulted in 28 violations of amateurism certification, academic certification and progress-toward-degree legislation. As a result, the student-athletes competed and received actual and necessary expenses while ineligible or not certified. The student-athletes competed in a total of 225 contests while ineligible or not certified.
Violations of NCAA Constitution 2.8.1 (2017-18 through 2019-20)
The institution and NCAA enforcement staff agreed that from the 2017-18 through 2019-20 academic years, the scope and nature of the violations detailed above demonstrate that the institution violated the NCAA principle of rules compliance when it failed to adequately monitor its certification processes and ensure compliance with NCAA amateurism, initial eligibility, continuing eligibility and transfer legislation. Specifically, the institution did not provide the necessary supervision of its NCAA certification system to verify the accuracy of student-athlete certification. This resulted in multiple student-athletes participating while ineligible or not certified.
As a result of the foregoing, the Committee penalized BSC as follows: