UConn Found Evidence of NCAA Violations Allegedly Committed by Kevin Ollie

Rob Goldberg@TheRobGoldbergFeatured ColumnistJune 21, 2018

Connecticut head coach Kevin Ollie during the first half an NCAA college basketball game, Thursday, Feb. 15, 2018, in Hartford, Conn. (AP Photo/Jessica Hill)
Jessica Hill/Associated Press

The University of Connecticut said it fired Kevin Ollie as a result of illegal practices committed by the head coach, per Dom Amore and Dave Altimari of the Hartford Courant.

Among the NCAA violations allegedly committed, Ollie is said to have facilitated a phone call between a recruit and former UConn star Ray Allen as well as getting a personal friend, Derrek Hamilton, to train his players off-campus in 2015-16.

These alleged transgressions could prevent the school from paying the coach the remaining $10 million owed on his contract.

The school said that several players were given food, transportation and housing after traveling to Atlanta to work with Hamilton. The trainer also allegedly received complimentary tickets to games.

Athletic director David Benedict, who fired Ollie in March while claiming "just cause," wrote a letter describing the violations. There was also concern about the lack of reporting from Ollie or his assistants.

"Every violation I am raising was discovered from sources other than you or your staff," Benedict said.

Ollie took over for longtime coach Jim Calhoun in 2012 and found immediate success, leading the team to a national championship in his second season behind Shabazz Napier.

The Huskies also reached the NCAA tournament in 2015-16 after winning the AAC tournament.

The team struggled from there with back-to-back losing seasons. Connecticut went 30-35 in Ollie's final two seasons before he was fired.

His contract ran through 2021, and he will receive the money owed if the school can't prove just cause. The case will go to arbitration following hearings with school officials.

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