Southern Miss receives NCAA notice of allegations

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WJTV) – Southern Miss received its notice of allegations from the NCAA on Friday regarding violations committed by former men’s basketball head coach Donnie Tyndall and his staff.

The notice detailed allegations of academic misconduct, impermissible financial aid, and being uncooperative with an NCAA investigation. These charge Tyndall and some of his staff members for their time at Southern Miss during 2012-2014.

Under academic misconduct, the NCAA alleged Tyndall and some of his staff members “were knowingly involved in arranging fraudulent academic credit in the completion of online coursework for seven then men’s basketball prospective student-athletes.” Southern Miss noted in a release that the coursework was done at other schools prior to the students coming to the university.

For the financial aid, the NCAA alleged Tyndall “provided impermissible source of financial aid to nonqualifier men’s basketball student-athletes.” The notice detailed how Tyndall gave cash and prepaid cards to two student-athletes.

As for being uncooperative with an NCAA investigation, the NCAA alleged Tyndall “violated NCAA responsibility to cooperate legislation and the NCAA principles of ethical conduct” and “obstructed the enforcement staff’s investigation when he deleted pertinent emails and when he provided false or misleading information to the enforcement staff and the institution.” In total, the NCAA detailed seven formal allegations.

Southern Miss released a joint statement from university President Rodney Bennett and athletic director Bill McGillis that acknowledged the severity of the allegations.

“The University understands the serious nature of the allegations and has worked collaboratively with the NCAA in reviewing this matter since last fall. We will continue to fully cooperate with the NCAA through the remainder of the administrative process, which we do not expect to conclude before Spring 2016,” Bennett and McGillis said.

The statement also highlighted the absence of a charge of lack of institutional control and failure to monitor the program by the University.

Tyndall led the Golden Eagles to a record of 56-17 over two seasons with two National Invitational Tournament appearances before leaving for Tennessee. Tennessee fired Tyndall after one season due to the investigation.

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