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UTPA Acknowledges Men’s Basketball Violations

May 24, 1996

EDINBURG, Texas (AP) _ In a written response to an NCAA investigation, Texas-Pan American officials acknowledged its basketball program committed rules violations that could draw the so-called death penalty.

The university’s response, filed March 1 with the NCAA, was obtained by The (McAllen) Monitor through the Texas Open Records Act. In it, school officials appear to concur with charges the NCAA began investigating last September.

``President (Miguel) Nevarez is deeply disappointed at being involved in another major infractions case,″ said the 250-page response. ``He acknowledges his responsibility to control the university’s athletics program and ensure compliance. In this instance, he did not succeed.″

The NCAA alleged that members of the basketball staff, including head coach Mark Adams, conducted illegal off-campus basketball camps, arranged for free medical treatment for a player and disregarded school and NCAA instructions on investigative procedures.

Adams denied any wrongdoing and contends the university is using him as a scapegoat to try to lessen the severity of NCAA sanctions. He has sued the university.

In its response, the university accuses Adams of lacking ``institutional control″ in complying with NCAA bylaws.

``Although (Mevarez) emphasized to Adams the importance of full compliance and received Adams’ commitment that major violations would not occur, President Nevarez realizes now that his trust in Adams was misplaced,″ the response states.

The NCAA Infractions Committee is expected to release its findings and announce any sanctions within the next three weeks. Those sanctions could include the so-called death penalty, the suspension of a program for one to two years, because Texas-Pan American is now on probation for penalties assessed in 1992.

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