Upon Further Review: NCAA Sends University of Hawaii Basketball Case Back to Committee on Infractions
On October 28, 2016, an internal NCAA appellate board said that the Division I Committee on Infractions should reconsider sanctions imposed on the University of Hawaii’s men’s basketball program. The Division I Infractions Appeals Committee found there was insufficient evidence showing that the university permitted men’s basketball coach Gib Arnold to act unethically, finding “there needs to be a connection between the behavior of the coach and the university.”
In 2015, the NCAA’s Division I Committee on Infractions found that Arnold violated NCAA rules concerning “impermissible coaching activities, coaching limitations, extra benefits and the participation of ineligible student-athletes.” In finding the school responsible, the Committee imposed a host of sanctions on the university, including a $10,000 fine, a one-year postseason ban, and a loss of two scholarships over two years. The university was already under investigation stemming from allegations that one of Arnold’s assistant coaches fraudulently completed a financial aid document for another basketball player.
When the university appealed the Committee’s decision, it argued that the sanctions should not have been imposed pursuant to the revised, and stricter, disciplinary procedures adopted by the NCAA in 2012. The Infractions Appeals Committee found that while there was sufficient evidence of an unethical conduct violation, the “ethical conduct rules cover more than the concept of knowingly furnishing or knowingly influencing others to furnish false or misleading information during an investigation.” The case is back before the Committee on Infractions where it will decide whether there was sufficient evidence that the university allowed Arnold to act unethically.