NCAA Hands Bruce Pearl Three-year Show-cause Penalty

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Bruce Pearl On Tennessee Basketball's Role In NCAA Notice Of Allegations

Bruce Pearl found himself charged with impermissible contact with recruits in an NCAA letter of allegations published Wednesday by the University of Tennessee. There’s nothing particularly new in the findings, as the SEC has already punished him for all of it.

But the NCAA is likely to exact an additional round of punishments, possibly up to branding Pearl as guilty of unethical conduct. After receiving the letter, which also alleges fault with Lane Kiffin’s time as Tennessee football coach, Pearl commented:

The receipt of today’s notice brings us one step closer to a final resolution in this matter. Throughout this process, we have recognized that we made significant mistakes, and we look forward to concluding this matter with the NCAA.

The penalties imposed on our program to date have been severe, but I want to commend our student-athletes and staff for staying focused and working through these potential distractions. The support of our fans and administration has been amazing and appreciated by me and my entire family, and reminds me every day why I have the best job in the nation. I appreciate the opportunity to serve the University of Tennessee, and everyone in our basketball program is focused on finding ways to improve every day.

We’ll have to wait to learn more about what this means for the future of Vols men’s hoops, but it’s safe to say any joy from last night’s win over Vandy should probably be muted.

For more on Pearl and the Vols, visit Rocky Top Talk.

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Bruce Pearl, Tennessee's Head Basketball Coach, Suspended First Eight SEC Games

Bruce Pearl, head coach of the Tennessee men's basketball team, has been suspended for this season's first eight SEC games (half of their league schedule), SEC commissioner Mike Slive announced on Friday.

"The suspension from coaching duties has been imposed after a careful review of the facts established during the NCAA's investigation and reported to the SEC office," said Slive. "I am extremely disappointed in the nature of the violations involving Coach Pearl and the Tennessee men's basketball program."

The suspension is punishment for "inappropriate conduct" during recruiting and providing false and misleading information to the NCAA during the investigation. The school imposed sanctions on itself back in September, and Pearl apologized to the fans and his players. 

Pearl -- suspended from "team activities" which "include, but are not limited to practices, meetings, pre- and post-game activities and the game itself" -- will miss a stretch of Tennessee games beginning on Jan. 8, at Arkansas and concluding on Feb. 5, when the Volunteers host Alabama. Jan. 8, 2011 Tennessee at Arkansas.

  • Jan. 11, 2011 Florida at Tennessee
  • Jan. 15, 2011 Vanderbilt at Tennessee
  • Jan. 18, 2011 Tennessee at Georgia
  • Jan. 26, 2011 LSU at Tennessee
  • Jan. 29, 2011 Tennessee at Ole Miss
  • Feb. 3, 2011 Tennessee at Auburn
  • Feb. 5, 2011 Alabama at Tennessee

Tennessee plays at Connecticut in the midst of that stretch, on Jan. 22, but Pearl will be allowed to coach, since it is an out-of-conference game. 

Tennessee, ranked No. 24 in the AP Poll, is 3-0 this season. They play Virginia Commonwealth on Nov. 24, at Madison Square Garden. 

For plenty more on this, head over to Rocky Top Talk

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Tennessee Coach Bruce Pearl Working Without A Contract During NCAA Investigation

According to WBIR-TV, Tennessee basketball head coach Bruce Pearl is working without a contract while the NCAA investigates his recruiting practices.

Pearl’s contract was terminated on Sept. 9, the day before he revealed to the public that he had provided incorrect information during an interview with NCAA investigators, Tennessee spokesman Jimmy Stanton said Thursday.

Tennessee officials presented Pearl with a new contract two weeks ago with a reduced salary, and attorneys are working to complete the deal. Pearl was to make $12.5 million over four seasons before athletics director Mike Hamilton reduced it by $1.5 million as part of his punishment for misleading the NCAA.

The main reason for the contract rip-up was language in it that stated that Pearl could be fired if he committed “acts of fraud.” Tennessee is currently under investigation due to excessive phone calls by their staff to recruits as well as Pearl’s misleading of investigators in regards to then-recruits Aaron Craft and Josh Selby.

Throw in the issue that Tennessee currently has no President and the situation gets even more muddled. If Pearl was found guilty of committing fraud, who would be there to fire him?

Keep an eye on Rocky Top Talk for updates and analysis.

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Bruce Pearl's 'Inappropriate Conduct': Visits With Junior Recruits

Bruce Pearl's "inappropriate conduct" with recruits apparently involved two high-school juniors, Aaron Craft and Josh Selby, visiting his home in 2008, a year before they would normally be allowed to visit with prospective coaches off-campus. SB Nation's Rocky Top Talk breaks down the implications:

Parrish goes on to report that Pearl lied to NCAA assistant director of enforcement Kristen Matha when asked about the in-home event.  Parrish's sources say the NCAA already had photographic evidence of Pearl and Craft inside his home at the time, which, if true, means Pearl was busted right away and not found out later.

These allegations fall in line with the "inappropriate contact" theme we've heard for the last several days, and this certainly sheds some light on the timetable in terms of Pearl's truthfulness with the NCAA.

Stay tuned to this StoryStream for further updates, and to SB Nation's Rocky Top Talk.

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