WACO, Texas — Less than a week after its women’s basketball team won the national championship, Baylor said Monday it has been involved in a three-year investigation with the NCAA into what are believed to be hundreds of impermissible phone calls and text messages sent by coaches to young prospects.
The school did not give any details, including which sports were involved, but the announcement came a few hours after ESPN.com reported that coaches for the men’s and women’s basketball programs had made more than 1,200 calls and text messages to prospects over a 29-month span dating to 2008. ESPN.com cited an NCAA report it had obtained.
The NCAA might dole out harsher punishment that what is listed in the report, which details a number of self-imposed penalties including barring women’s coach Kim Mulkey from recruiting off campus in July
and fewer scholarships for both programs.
Nick Joos, Baylor’s executive associate athletic director for external affairs, said the school had not received notice of a “final decision” from the infractions committee.
“Regarding today’s premature public reports of the matter, the institution remains committed to protecting the integrity of the totality of the case in accordance with its obligations under NCAA legislation, and therefore the university and its officials will make no comment,” Joos said.
NCAA President Mark Emmert said the NCAA would not comment on the case because it’s still under review.
The Baylor women beat Notre Dame for the national title last week, capping the first 40-0 season in NCAA history. The men’s team, coached by Scott Drew, won a school-record 30 games and reached an NCAA regional final, where it lost to eventual national champion Kentucky.
According to the summary disposition quoted by ESPN.com, Mulkey, Drew and their assistants were involved in sending 738 impermissible text messages and making 528 impermissible calls. The violations were termed “major” because of their frequency.
According to the report, star center Brittney Griner’s recruitment is part of the investigation.
The report said Mulkey and her staff committed minor NCAA violations for having impermissible contact with Griner and her family.