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NCAA hikes penalties for major infractions

INDIANAPOLIS — The NCAA passed a package of sweeping changes Tuesday intended to crack down on rule-breaking schools and coaches.

Under legislation approved by the 13-member board of directors, programs that commit the most egregious infractions could face postseason bans of two to four years and fines in the millions, while coaches could face suspensions of up to one year for violations committed by their staffs. The board also approved measures to expand the penalty structure from two tiers to four, create new penalty guidelines and speed up the litigation process.

The vote ends a movement that started in August 2011, in the midst of one of the most scandalous years in college sports history. NCAA president Mark Emmert was so concerned that he asked dozens of university leaders to join him at a retreat in Indianapolis. There, Emmert, school presidents and chancellors said they would get tough on those who refused to play by the rules.

"We have sought all along to remove the 'risk-reward' analysis that has tempted people — often because of the financial pressures to win at all costs — to break the rules in the hopes that either they won't be caught or that the consequences won't be very harsh if they do get caught," Emmert said.

Under the plan, violators found in a "serious breach of conduct" with aggravating circumstances could get those postseason bans and be forced to return millions of dollars from specific events or gross revenue generated by the sport.

Basketball

WOMEN'S ALL-AMERICANS: Baylor's Brittney Griner became the third player to be a two-time unanimous choice on the Associated Press' preseason team. Delaware senior Elena Delle Donne and Notre Dame senior Skylar Diggins were also on all 40 ballots. Stanford's Chiney Ogwumike (23 votes), Maryland's Alyssa Thomas (19) and Baylor's Odyssey Sims (19) joined them.

PITINO EXTENSION: Louisville gave Rick Pitino a five-year contract extension that will keep the coach with the Cardinals through the 2021-22 season. His $3.9 million base salary remains the same, but he will earn a $600,000 retention bonus every other year from 2014 to 2022.

TENNESSEE: Forward Jeronne Maymon will miss the Nov. 9 season opener as he recovers from offseason arthroscopic surgery to both knees.

Football

OBITUARY: Don Steinberg, who as an end in a single-wing attack helped Ohio State win its first national championship in 1942, died Monday of congestive heart failure in Perry Township, Ohio. He was 90.

AUBURN: Coach Gene Chizik said freshman quarterback Jonathan Wallace will start Saturday against New Mexico State. He replaces Clint Moseley, who sustained a left ankle injury last weekend against Texas A&M.

KANSAS ST.: Linebacker Tre Walker appears likely to miss significant time after hurting his right knee in Saturday's win over Texas Tech. Walker tweeted that he was on crutches, and teammates indicated he may not return this season.

PURDUE: Coach Danny Hope said he's not worried about the statement athletic director Morgan Burke released about the state of the program. The Boilermakers, expected to challenge for a Rose Bowl berth, are 0-4 in the Big Ten.

NCAA hikes penalties for major infractions 10/30/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, October 30, 2012 8:46pm]

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