NCAA rules that eight Miami players must sit out games
CORAL GABLES, Fla. – Quarterback Jacory Harris and 11 other Miami players who accepted extra benefits from former booster Nevin Shapiro will be allowed by the NCAA to play again, the first sanctions in a scandal that continues to overshadow the Hurricanes.
In all, 12 players must pay at least some restitution. Of those, eight will miss at least one game.
The harshest penalties handed down Tuesday were reserved for those who took gifts from Shapiro while being recruited. Defensive lineman Olivier Vernon will sit out six games, while Ray Ray Armstrong – considered among the nation’s top safeties – and tight end Dyron Dye will miss four games apiece. They are three of eight players, including Harris, who must sit out games and make restitution before they can be reinstated.
“I think it was probably fair,” Miami coach Al Golden told the Associated Press. “Clearly, whatever transpired, it wasn’t as over-the-top as everybody was initially reporting and all of those things. The NCAA and the university felt there was mistakes made … and I’ve accepted that. And now we’re moving forward.”
Miami opens its season at Maryland on Monday night.
The Hurricanes still might face many more sanctions as the NCAA’s investigation into Miami’s compliance practices continues. “Our members have continually stressed that involvement of third parties during recruitment will not be tolerated,” NCAA vice president of academic and membership affairs Kevin Lennon said.
Harris, Sean Spence, Travis Benjamin, Marcus Forston and Adewale Ojomo – all of whom were likely starters – must sit out one game and make restitution for accepting benefits after enrolling at the school. Four other players must repay small amounts, all less than $100, but will not miss any games.