4 Schools Punished By NCAA

Jerry Liska
Date Published: 
Hobbs Daily News-Sun

CHICAGO (AP) — The National Collegiate Athletic Association launched today one of the most important annual conventions in its 67 year history after punishing four members for infractions of the NCAA code.

The group's governing council Wednesday placed Centenary College of Shreveport, La. on indefinite probation and Western Kentucky and New Mexico State on two-year probation—all three for basketball
program violations—and meted a one-year probation to Howard University while automatically vacating the Washington, D.C. school's 1971 NCAA soccer championship.

The sanctions barred the basketball teams of Western Kentucky, New Mexico State and Centenary from all port-season tournament play and NCAA governed TV appearances for their probation duration.

Howard is banned one year from competing in the National Collegiate Soccer Championship.

Centenary was charged with allowing some players financial aid, even though the players are not expected to attain the 1.6 academic grade average NCAA rules require. Highly recruited basketball star Bob Parish falls into this category, the council noted.

The council sidestepped expected punishment of Southwestern Louisiana, charged with numerous infractions in recruiting its basketball team currently ranked number 13 in the AP's national poll.

The southern school obtained a federal court order restraining any NCAA probe until next Monday and the council, by then adjourned, may forestall action until its next regular meeting in April.

The New Mexico State case included charges that John Williamson, currently among the nation's basketball scoring leaders, and teammate Roland Grant, during 1970-71 received "improper compensation and financial benefits."

Western Kentucky's infractions, mainly noted in 1970-71, were cited as "provided or promised improper inducements" to as many as six basketball prospects at various times: tryouts and out-of-season drills in basketball; unauthorized transportation of prospects and improper pre-enrollment testing of one prospect in 1969.

Howard University's troubles centered on the use of two Trinidad soccer starts on its 1971 NCAA championship team after each had the maximum five varsity seasons, including a year of foreign competition.