The Florida Gators' football program is currently under NCAA investigation. The investigation began after the NCAA sent a notice of inquiry to UF President Ben Sasse on June 9. The specific nature of the investigation and potential violations have not been disclosed in the four-page note. However, the Tampa Bay Times had previously requested any notices of inquiry related to name, image, and likeness or recruiting, which was initially denied but later fulfilled.
The Gators' spokesperson, Steve McClain, stated that the university has been and will continue to cooperate with the NCAA. They uphold high standards of excellence and integrity both on and off the field, but due to NCAA policies on confidentiality, they cannot provide further comments.
This investigation comes as NCAA enforcement is trying to keep up with the rapid changes in recruiting and name, image, and likeness. Last year, the Gators were involved in an eight-figure NIL dispute with blue-chip quarterback recruit Jaden Rashada and the third-party Gator Collective. Rashada initially signed with Florida but ended up playing for Arizona State.
In another separate case, the Gators were previously sanctioned by the NCAA in December 2020. They received a one-year probation for recruiting violations under former coach Dan Mullen. The violations included impermissible contact between coaches and recruits and a meeting between Mullen and a recruit who hadn't completed his junior year of high school.
Last week, Florida State University was also sanctioned after offensive coordinator Alex Atkins drove a transfer prospect to a meeting with a booster involved in a name, image, and likeness collective. The booster offered the prospect a $15,000 inducement, as stated in the NCAA's negotiated resolution with the Seminoles.
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Author Bio: Matt Baker is a sports reporter covering college sports and recruiting. Contact him at [email protected].
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