Graves named a finalist for Naismith Coach of the Year

Oregon women’s basketball head coach Kelly Graves was named a semifinalist for the 2018 Naismith Women’s College Coach of the Year award on Wednesday. The announcement comes two days before the No. 8 Ducks (25-4, 14-2) travel to face the Arizona schools with their first chance at a Pac-12 title …

Oregon women’s basketball, men’s basketball and track and field were given NCAA penalties after committing violations, the NCAA announced on Wednesday.

The football program was also named in the report, but received no penalties. The men’s and women’s basketball programs will serve a two-year NCAA probation, among other penalties.

The infractions range from 2013 to 2017 and were self-reported by Oregon.

Women’s basketball head coach Kelly Graves will serve a two-game suspension for allowing an assistant strength coach to participate in on-court activities, exceeding the number of allowable coaches. The assistant strength coach also participated in voluntary student-athlete workouts, which Graves “assumed” was happening.

The NCAA stated he failed to promote a “culture of compliance.”

Graves told The Emerald he will be with the team on its upcoming two-game road trip starting this Sunday at Michigan State. As of 11 a.m. Wednesday, he did not know how the university or the team will manage his suspension.

"We don't know where we are going to with this yet," he said. "We still have a chance to appeal."

Graves said he doesn't think his absence from the team will impact its performance.

"I have a lot of confidence in A: my staff, and in B: my players," Graves told The Emerald.

Men’s basketball director of operations, Josh Jamieson, observed 64 individual workouts, according to the report. He served a program-imposed one-month ban. He observed more workouts during the NCAA investigation. Jamieson also acted as a referee in men’s basketball practices, which is against NCAA rules.

Both the men’s and women’s programs are fined $5,000 plus 1 percent of each programs budget.

The University of Oregon received a Notice of Allegations and announced it Dec. 20 of last year.

Oregon athletic director Rob Mullens stated at the time: “Coach Altman and coach Graves are committed to compliance with NCAA bylaws, they have the highest ethical standards on and off the court, and each acknowledges the infractions that took place within their programs. In both cases, our monitoring program identified the issues and they were reported to the NCAA. We have addressed the matters with the responsible employees and enhanced compliance training within the department. These cases do not merit the level of charges against the coaches sought by the NCAA.”

The NCAA also punished the Oregon track and field program for allowing sprinter Jasmine Todd to compete in four contests while ineligible. The NCAA found an anthropology professor, which 2016 records indicate was Larry Ulibarri, changed an “F” to a “B-” so she could remain eligible for competition. The UO later rescinded the grade change and Todd’s degree. Ulibarri is scheduled to teach classes during the 2019 winter term.

“It is the role of the University Senate, the administration and other campus stakeholders to define and assess academic standards at the University of Oregon. Our faculty take very seriously our responsibility to ensure that no student is unfairly advantaged or disadvantaged as it relates to academic opportunity,” said Chris Sinclair, president of the University Senate and professor of mathematics, in a statement released by UO at the time the infraction was announced. “While we acknowledge this was a violation of grading policy, this incident does not rise to our community standards for academic fraud or misconduct.”

The Infractions panel announced today it met the standards for NCAA academic misconduct rules, and the track and field program must vacate all of Todd’s results while ineligible.

Oregon football used a board within an athletic facility to display information about prospects during visits, which is against NCAA rules. The program ended the practice upon learning of the breach in compliance.

This post has been updated to include comments from Graves.

Follow Jack Butler on Twitter @Butler917

Sports Reporter

Maggie is a senior sports reporter covering all things Oregon sports including football, volleyball, women's basketball and softball. Contact her via email at [email protected]

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