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UMass Basketball, Tennis Stripped Of NCAA Wins And Title Over Misspent $9,000

UMass Men's Basketball play at the Mullins Center in 2014.  The photo is being used as an illustration. The game pictured  was not part of the 2020 NCAA review.
UMass Men's Basketball play at the Mullins Center in 2014. The photo is being used as an illustration. The game pictured was not part of the 2020 NCAA review. Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons: Terageorge, CC BY-SA 3.0 creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0

The NCAA is stripping UMass Amherst Men’s Basketball and Women’s Tennis of past victories.

The UMass men’s basketball team will vacate 59 wins.

The women’s tennis team is being stripped of three year’s worth of wins including the 2017 Atlantic 10 Championship, according to The Guardian.

UMass plans to appeal the penalty.

Earlier this month the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) announced sanctions against the University of Massachusetts Amherst, but it wasn’t clear what the impact would be until Tuesday, Oct. 27.

Following a review, the NCAA alleged that UMass paid about a dozen student-athletes more than the cost of attending school - a violation of the association’s rules. NCAA student-athletes cannot be paid.

The NCAA says UMass paid more than $9,100 in excess of the full cost of attendance on 13 occasions over a three-year period. 

- Four students received a higher housing rate after they moved to a less-expensive off-campus house, the NCAA said.

- Eight students continued to receive a fee associated with dorm phones after they moved to off-campus housing.

- One student received both the higher housing rate and phone fee, the NCAA said.

Though the NCAA alleged that the additional funds were dispersed accidentally, penalties must still be imposed.

“The violations occurred as a result of a former associate athletics director’s misunderstanding of financial aid rules and administrative error,” the NCAA said in a statement.

Due to the alleged violations, the students who accepted these funds played when they were ineligible. Therefore, wins are being vacated.

In addition to the vacated wins, UMass will undergo two years of probation - Oct. 16, 2020 - Oct 15, 2022, and pay a $5,000 fine.

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