September 4, 2018 9:32:52 AM
Brett Hudson - [email protected]
STARKVILLE -- Mississippi State self-reported three NCAA violations, all of them minor in nature, from Jan. 1 to June 30, The Dispatch learned through an open records request.
All three violations were classified as Secondary/Level III, which the NCAA defines as, "isolated or limited in nature, can be inadvertent in nature, and only provides a minimal recruiting, competitive, or other advantage."
In all three cases, the programs received minimal punishments and the Southeastern Conference elected to accept the school's punishment, adding nothing further. None of the violations impacted a student-athlete's eligibility or the team's recruiting resources.
The three violations occurred in women's soccer (one) and in baseball (two).
The soccer violation occurred April 8. A coach, whose name was redacted, "required the team to participate in a promotional activity with a local youth soccer organization" on a mandated off day.
The violation was discovered when the team's Twitter account tweeted about participation in the event. The self-report violation form obtained by The Dispatch states, "No one in the athletic department outside of the soccer staff was aware of this activity and had institutional policy regarding promotional activities been followed, and the Life Skills coordinator been involved, it would have been brought to the attention of the Head Coach prior to this activity occurring that it was taking place on a required day off."
The coach's name is redacted, but under institutional action, the form states, "[redacted] will be given a letter of admonishment with a reminder of his responsibility as Head Coach per bylaw 18.104.22.168." Tom Anagnost is MSU's women's soccer coach.
The first baseball violation occurred Feb. 10.
"The baseball teams annually delivers season tickets in person to local season ticket holders. The activity is 'sponsored' by a car company, which provided a truck driven by the Asst AD for marketing for some players to ride in to deliver tickets in the locale of the institution," the self-reported violation form states. "The Asst AD for marketing took a video of the players getting out of the truck and delivering tickets. He sent the video to the Asst Director for Communications with car company social media handle and the video showed current baseball student athletes getting out of the vehicle provided by the sponsor."
The second violation occurred Feb. 15. A coach, whose name is redacted, liked a tweet from a scouting service. The only punishment was department-wide rules education.
MSU committed 14 violations in the 2016-17 academic year, according to documents obtained by The Starkville Daily News, and The Knoxville News Sentinel reported Tennessee committed six violations in the first half of 2018.
Follow Dispatch sports writer Brett Hudson on Twitter @Brett_Hudson