SEC Suspends Pearl for Eight League Games | Zagsblog
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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Tuesday / May 21.
  • SEC Suspends Pearl for Eight League Games

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    The Southeastern Conference announced that Tennessee head coach Bruce Pearl will be suspended for the team’s first eight league games because of admitted NCAA recruiting violations.

    “I have been a very public advocate for playing by the rules,” Pearl 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.”

    In September, Tennessee cut Pearl’s salary by $1.5 million over five years and told him he couldn’t recruit off campus for a year.

    Pearl must sit beginning with the Jan. 11 game at Arkansas through the Feb. 5 home game with Alabama.

    He can return Feb. 8 at Kentucky.

    Pearl can still coach in non-league outings, including the Jan. 22 tilt at UConn.

    “The suspension from coaching duties has been imposed after a careful review of the facts established during the NCAA’s investigation and reported to the SEC office,” SEC Commissioner Mike Slive said. 

    “I am extremely disappointed in the nature of the violations involving Coach Pearl and the Tennessee men’s basketball program.  The penalty applied to this circumstance is significant, which is consistent with the directive approved by the SEC membership in 2010 granting the Commissioner authority to act in such cases.”

    At the 2010 SEC Annual Meeting, the Presidents  & Chancellors of the conference reconfirmed that the Commissioner “has the authority to suspend institutional staff members from participation in recruiting activities or participation in practice and/or competition due to their involvement in violations of NCAA or SEC rules.

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    Adam Zagoria is a Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. A contributor to The New York Times and SportsNet New York (SNY), he is also the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist and filmmaker. His articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. He also won an Emmy award for his work on the SNY mini-documentary on Syracuse guard Tyus Battle. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

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