NACOGDOCHES, Texas (KTRE) - SFA Coaches have released statements following the NCAA’s announcement of sanctions against the Lumberjack athletic programs after the NCAA found that the department lacked institutional control from 2013-2019 when dealing with the reporting of Academic Progress.
The Level I (Mitigated) sanctions agreed upon by the NCAA and Stephen F. Austin include the following:
- Three years of probation;
- Public reprimand and censure;
- A fine of $5,000 plus one-half of one percent of the total budgets for football and men’s basketball;
- The return of 50 percent of the University’s financial share earned from participation in the 2016 NCAA Tournament;
- The forfeiture of all records and contests in which an ineligible SFA student-athlete competed, which includes 29 football victories from 2013-2019; 117 men’s basketball victories from 2014 to 2019; 112 baseball victories from 2015 to 2019; 31 softball victories from the 2018 season; and adjusted conference championship scores from women’s golf, women’s track and field, men’s cross country and men’s track and field.
- Included in the vacation of wins are conference championships in men’s basketball in 2014-15, 2015-16 and 2017-18, as well as the program’s First Round win in the 2016 NCAA Tournament. The banners recognizing those achievements will be removed from William R. Johnson Coliseum.
- A 2.5% reduction in financial aid awards (scholarships) in football for 2020-2021 and 2021-2022; a 5% reduction in baseball in either 2020-21 or 2021-2022 and the loss of one scholarship in men’s basketball in either 2020-2021 or 2021-22.
- Prior to the conclusion of the probationary period, the institution will submit to a data review with APP staff.
Ryan Ivey was the only SFA official to speak on camera with media at this time but coaches have released statements.
SFA Men’s Head Basketball Coach Kyle Keller:
“I am disappointed on many fronts, not only for our men’s basketball student-athletes, but for the other sports affected by this ruling today, as well as our great fans and alumni. Neither this current basketball roster and coaching staff, nor myself have been implicated in any violations or findings by the NCAA. That being said, I acknowledge and respect the NCAA’s decision to levy this punishment due to improper advisement by our previous academic staff to a group of student-athletes. As a department under the direction of our current Director of Athletics, Ryan Ivey, we have all worked diligently to uphold the highest standards of academic integrity and will continue to do so. As long as I remain the head coach of the SFA men’s basketball program, we will continue to exemplify those standards of excellence both on and off the court. Both our future and present remain extremely bright at SFA. Axe Em ‘Jacks!"
SFA Head Football Coach Colby Carthel
“This post-season ban is a result of mistakes made in the past and doesn’t represent the current culture of SFA Football. When we took the program over, we inherited a team with a 2.06 GPA. However, through the hard work of our student-athletes and new academic support team, this spring semester our team achieved a 3.11 GPA! That academic success will continue into the future. I believe in these student-athletes, our current coaches, staff, and administration. There are some great days on the horizon for SFA Football, and we’re all excited to continue building this program into a champion!”
SFA Head Baseball Coach Johnny Cardenas
“Due to our APR team score as released by the NCAA this week, the Lumberjack baseball program will receive a postseason ban for the upcoming 2020-21 season. While this is a blow to our team and program, we stand together in our resolve to show how strong our leadership can be during these difficult times. Our department is unified behind a goal of operating with integrity and high standards in everything that we do, and continuing to strive for the best performance in the classroom and on the field.”