BOLIVAR, Mo. (AP) - The NCAA has sanctioned the men's basketball team at Southwest Baptist University after an investigation found hundreds of impermissible text messages sent to prospective athletes.
Penalties include one year of probation, recruiting limitations, scholarship reductions and a two-conference-game suspension for head coach Jeff Guiot.
"I am very sorry it happened," said Director of Athletics Mike Pitts. "Coach Guiot has been very open and honest throughout the process and I support him."
The NCAA said Wednesday Guiot sent 472 impermissible text messages to 29 prospective student-athletes and the parents of two prospective student-athletes. The NCAA said he acknowledged he knew the rule and gained a recruiting advantage by texting the prospects.
"We have been very cooperative with the NCAA," said Pitts. "We are ready to move past this unfortunate situation."
Guiot, was not named in the NCAA's report but has been the head coach of the SBU men's basketball team since the 2004-05 season.
Pitts told KSPR the University would make a public release in the near future. It should also be noted the NCAA recently passed a rule allowing text messaging by coaches. That new rule takes effect June 15th. Under the sanctions however, SBU will not immediately be allowed to send text messages.
SBU already instituted several self imposed sanctions, but the NCAA noted that its Committee on Infractions was particularly concerned that the problems occurred after a previous text messaging violation.