Posted by Joey Mullins on 2011-05-13

The NCAA Division I Committee on Infractions has penalized Samford University for violations of NCAA financial aid rules involving student-athletes in its football, men’s basketball and women’s soccer programs.

            From the 2007 summer academic term through the 2009 summer term, Samford provided impermissible financial aid to 49 student-athletes prior to their full-time enrollment at Samford.  While all these athletes were enrolled in summer classes, none were enrolled in the NCAA-required minimum of six credit hours, and some were enrolled in physical education courses.

            When the violations came to the attention of athletic administrative officials, Samford self-reported them to the NCAA, said athletics director Martin Newton.   “Samford had previously never utilized summer financial aid for student-athletes and was simply not familiar with the applicable rules,” said Newton.  “Once the potential infractions were realized by the institution, Samford immediately self-reported the violations and the NCAA investigation followed.”

            Following a review of the violations, the NCAA placed Samford on two years probation from May 13, 2011, through May 12, 2013, and fined the university $15,000.  The probation includes no loss of eligibility by student athletes, no scholarship reduction and no post-season ban.

            “Samford agreed that it failed to monitor the rule related to prospective student-athletes enrolled in summer school prior to their full-time enrollment,” said Newton, who was named Samford’s athletics director in March 2011.  “These were a series of secondary violations over a three-year period that warranted a public reprimand and censure.  These rules were not broken to gain a competitive advantage but as a result of not monitoring the rules for financial aid. 

         “We shall certainly endeavor to monitor these and all other rules closely in the future,” he added.


Samford is a leading Christian university offering undergraduate programs grounded in the liberal arts with an array of nationally recognized graduate and professional schools. Founded in 1841, Samford is the 87th-oldest institution of higher learning in the United States. Samford enrolls 5,791 students from 49 states, Puerto Rico and 16 countries in its 10 academic schools: arts, arts and sciences, business, divinity, education, health professions, law, nursing, pharmacy and public health. Samford fields 17 athletic teams that compete in the tradition-rich Southern Conference and ranks 6th nationally for its Graduation Success Rate among all NCAA Division I schools.