KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Tennessee coach Bruce Pearl has been suspended for the Volunteers' first eight SEC games by league commissioner Mike Slive for violating NCAA rules and misleading investigators.
"I have been a very public advocate for playing by the rules," Pearl, 50, said Friday. "When you don't play by the rules, these are the things that can happen. So while these penalties that we've self-imposed and now the commissioner's imposing are unprecedentedly strong, it sets a very high standard and a high standard that I agreed to."
Tony Jones, associate head coach for No. 24 Tennessee, will replace Pearl for those eight games.
Slive, given authority to issue suspensions at the SEC's spring meetings, sent a letter Thursday telling Pearl he cannot participate in any related activity or practice on those game days.
The commissioner said he considered suspending Pearl for the entire SEC slate and punishing his assistants, also accused of NCAA violations.
The NCAA is expected to present Tennessee with allegations stemming from its investigation in December and could decide to impose additional penalties on Pearl and Tennessee. The ongoing investigation also has looked at the Vols' football and baseball teams.
Pearl acknowledged in September that he misled investigators about photos taken of him and recruit Aaron Craft, when Pearl improperly hosted the prospect at his home in 2008. Tennessee also revealed Pearl and his staff made excessive calls to recruits. Tennessee athletic director Mike Hamilton docked Pearl's pay by $1.5 million over five years and banned him from participating in off-campus recruiting for a year.
NO. 1 DUKE 110, COLGATE 58: Nolan Smith scored 18 and Kyle Singler had 16 as the Blue Devils (3-0) won their 80th straight home nonconference game.
NO. 5 PITT 68, TEXAS 66: Ashton Gibbs scored 19 of his 24 points in the second half, including a 3-pointer with 1:24 left to give the Panthers (5-0) a 66-62 lead en route to winning the 2K Sports Classic in New York.
NO. 7 KANSAS 93, N. TEXAS 60: Marcus Morris scored 10 of his 20 points in the first five minutes after intermission for the Jayhawks (3-0), who tied a team record for consecutive home wins at 62, matching the Allen Fieldhouse mark set from 1994-98.
MINNESOTA 72, NO. 8 UNC 67: Blake Hoffarber scored 20 to lead the Golden Gophers (3-0) to an upset over North Carolina (2-1) at the Puerto Rico Tip-Off tournament in San Juan. Minnesota faces West Virginia in Sunday's final.
NO. 13 Illinois 80, MARYLAND 76: The Illini rebounded from an overtime semifinal loss to Texas to take third place at the 2K Sports Classic in New York. Illinois (4-1) shot 10-for-19 (52.6 percent) on 3-pointers.
NO. 20 G'TOWN 74, WOFFORD 59: The Hoyas watched a 15-point lead slip to five before regaining their edge to reach the final of the Charleston (S.C.) Classic. Julian Vaughn had 12 points and 10 rebounds for Georgetown (4-0), which faces North Carolina State on Sunday.
MIAMI 88, N.C. CENTRAL 65: Freshman Rion Brown scored 17 for the host Hurricanes (2-1), who broke it open with a 12-0 run early in the second half.
ECKERD 86, FLA. MEMORIAL 64: Senior Dale Carn scored 14 on 7-of-8 shooting for the Tritons (3-1) at the Jay McCormick Classic in West Palm Beach.
NO. 2 BAYLOR 78, NO. 25 MICH. ST. 52: Brittney Griner scored 29 and moved within a block of Baylor's career record. The sophomore had four blocks for the host Bears (4-1), giving her 248, one less than Danielle Wilson's three-season total. Kalisha Keane had 28 points for MSU (2-1).
NO. 3 STANFORD 62, UTAH 53: Jeanette Pohlen scored 19 as the visiting Cardinal (2-0) won despite missing reigning Pac-10 player of the year Nnemkadi Ogwumike, who sat out with an undisclosed medical problem.
NO. 10 W. VA. 66, DEL. ST. 31: Madina Ali scored 13 for the host Mountaineers (3-0), who forced 30 turnovers.
NO. 11 OKLAHOMA 84, W. ILL. 43: Danielle Robinson had 20 and four steals as the host Sooners (2-0) forced 23 turnovers.
NO. 13 G'TOWN 50, LA SALLE 46: Sugar Rodgers and Monica McNutt scored 10 each for the host Hoyas (3-0), who opened the second half with a 15-0 run.
NO. 14 UNC 93, COASTAL CARO. 37: Italee Lucas scored 15 for the host Tar Heels (3-0), who scored the game's first 16 points on the way to a 45-10 halftime lead.
NO. 18 GEORGIA 79, CHATT. 69: Jasmine Hassell scored 16 to lead the host Bulldogs (2-0) in coach Andy Landers' 1,000th game. Landers is 752-248 in his 31st season at Georgia.
NO. 20 ST. JOHN'S 65, COLUMBIA 41: Coco Hart scored 16 for the host Red Storm (3-1) against its New York rival.
NO. 23 TCU 83, TEXAS-S.A. 59: Emily Carter scored 22 but had her streak of consecutive free-throws made snapped at 60 for the visiting Horned Frogs (3-0).