NCAA says three former coaches misled probe

CORAL GABLES, Fla. (AP) — The NCAA believes former Miami assistant coaches Clint Hurtt, Aubrey Hill and Jorge Fernandez provided

false or misleading information during the probe into the Hurricanes' athletic department.

The NCAA said all three violated "principles

of ethical conduct" as part of the notice of allegations served against

the Hurricanes,

according to a person who spoke to The Associated Press Wednesday

on condition of anonymity because the allegations have not

been released publicly.

Hurtt and Hill were members of Miami's football staff. Fernandez worked on the men's basketball staff.

Several other coaches are named or referenced in the allegations, including Missouri basketball coach Frank Haith. But only

Hurtt, Hill and Fernandez are facing the ethical-conduct charge, commonly known as NCAA Rule 10.1.

Hurtt is currently on the staff at Louisville. Hill is not working as a coach at this time, and Fernandez spent last season

as an assistant at Marshall, resigning last May.

The notice of allegations was delivered to

Miami on Tuesday, and the university is facing the charge that it had a

"lack of

institutional control" — one of the worst things the NCAA can levy

against a member school. The charge revolves around how

the school allegedly failed to monitor conduct of Nevin Shapiro, a

rogue booster and convicted felon who provided cash, gifts

and other items to players on the football and men's basketball

teams.

University President Donna Shalala said Tuesday night that the Hurricanes have suffered enough already through self-imposed

sanctions. Through a university spokesman, she declined further comment Wednesday.

The NCAA said Hurtt and Hill committed the same violations, at least related to the ethical-conduct matter.

The NCAA alleged both provided meals,

transportation and lodging to either recruits, current players, or both

in either 2008

or 2009. Both were interviewed by the NCAA during the course of

its probe and allegedly denied providing those extra benefits,

statements the NCAA said were contradicted in each case by what

players told them separately.

Hurtt also took a $2,500 personal loan from Shapiro, which was repaid. The NCAA also believes he sent about 40 impermissible

text messages to recruits, which typically is a secondary, or minor, violation.

Fernandez, the NCAA alleged, "knowingly provided extra benefits" in the form of an air ticket. The NCAA said Fernandez denied

using air miles for the tickets for a men's basketball player and a high school coach, despite evidence to the contrary.

In February 2012, Miami center Reggie

Johnson was ruled ineligible by the school after an investigation

revealed that members

of his family accepted "impermissible travel benefits" from a

member of the school's former coaching staff, without specifying

Fernandez or anyone else by name. The university said Johnson was

not aware of the benefits, personally accepted nothing and

that his family had been told they were allowed.

Johnson was reinstated quickly last season,

and remains a key part of this season's team — now ranked No. 2 in the

nation

and leading the Atlantic Coast Conference. The ongoing cloud of

the scandal is not hurting the Hurricanes, basketball coach

Jim Larranaga said Tuesday night.

"If it was overshadowing what we were doing,

this room would not be packed," Larranaga said after his team beat

Virginia.

"We're getting so much exposure. We can only focus on the things

we have control over. We have nothing to do with the investigation."

Several other former Miami coaches are named

in the allegations as well, including one-time men's basketball

assistant Jake

Morton, who the NCAA said, among other things, accepted

"supplemental income" of at least $6,000 from Shapiro. Morton is now

on the staff at Western Kentucky.

Missouri coach Frank Haith is alleged of

failing "to promote an atmosphere for compliance," a charge specific to

how he handled

things when Shapiro allegedly wanted money in exchange for not

going public with accusations that he paid to help the Hurricanes

recruit a player.

Some of the allegations are more than 10 years old, including a claim that Shapiro bought a suit for former Miami star running

back Willis McGahee to wear to the Heisman Trophy ceremony in 2002.

Other allegations include that he paid for dinners at Benihana, televisions, sneakers, Miami Heat tickets, bowling parties,

one player's engagement ring, a used washer-dryer set for current New England Patriots lineman Vince Wilfork, and that he

directed his girlfriend to give two former Hurricanes no-show jobs for a couple of months.