Missouri men's basketball coach Frank Haith will serve a five-game suspension to begin the 2013-14 season for failing to monitor the activities of his assistant coaches and attempting to cover up a booster's threats to disclose incriminating information during his time at Miami.
The NCAA announced the suspension when it released the findings of its investigation into Miami athletics on Tuesday, findings which included 13 pages on Haith and his time with the Hurricanes.
The NCAA said that Haith failed to "promote an atmosphere of compliance" after discovering that he and an unnamed assistant coach provided former Miami booster Nevin Shapiro with $10,000 after Shapiro threatened to expose previous improper contact between the staff and high school recruits and amateur coaches. The NCAA also found that Haith helped his assistant pay off Shapiro's mother.
Here's a relevant chunk of the report:
When the booster began experiencing financial trouble, he requested that the former head men's basketball coach loan him a large sum of money or that the former head men's basketball coach return the booster's $50,000 donation. The former head men's basketball coach denied the booster's request; however, a former assistant men's basketball coach agreed to loan the booster $7,000, which the booster eventually repaid. After the booster was incarcerated in 2010, he began to threaten the former head men's basketball coach and assistant coach and demand money. The committee determined the former head men's basketball coach and the former assistant men's basketball coach worked together to make sure the booster received $10,000 to end the booster's threats.
The former head men's basketball coach was aware of the booster's threats and he took steps to help a former assistant men's basketball coach to make a payment to the booster's mother to end the threats. As the leader of a high-profile basketball program, he had a responsibility to make sure he and his staff followed the rules. However, the former coach did not meet his responsibilities and this conduct resulted in violations. The committee noted that had he asked about the basis of the threats and the former assistant coaches' relationship with the booster, he could have recognized potential concerns or taken the issue to the compliance office.
Missouri athletic director Mike Alden said Tuesday that the findings and the suspension will have no effect on Haith's status as the Tigers' head coach.
"We certainly recognize the serious nature of the allegations included in today's report," Alden said in a statement."At Missouri, we take great pride in our conduct with regard to NCAA rules and regulations. During his time here, Coach Haith has been forthright with me and our compliance staff throughout this long process. After all this time, Coach Haith, his family, the University of Missouri, our student-athletes, and our fans, deserve closure. We are extremely excited about the direction of our program and look forward to his continued leadership for our young men. I'm proud to have Frank Haith as our men's basketball coach."
Haith, the 2012 Associated Press College Basketball Coach of the Year, has taken Missouri to the NCAA Tournament in each of his first two seasons in Columbia, but has lost in the round of 64 both times.