Losing games is not the only problem Gene Chizik has faced this fall at Auburn. The embattled coach of the Tigers also is overseeing a program being investigated by the NCAA, Yahoo! Sports has learned.
With Auburn 3-8 and winless in Southeastern Conference play, Chizik’s job is in jeopardy. The ongoing NCAA investigation only heightens the likelihood that the Tigers’ game Saturday against rival Alabama will be Chizik’s last at the school. Chizik was asked in late October about a radio Report that some of his coaches had been taken off the recruiting trail. He did not confirm or deny the report at the time.
Sources told Yahoo! Sports in September that the NCAA has been investigating the recruitment of 2012 Auburn signee Jovon Robinson, whose Memphis Wooddale High School academic transcript was found to be forged and was subsequently declared ineligible in August to play this year at the school. The Memphis Commercial Appeal reported in August that a guidance counselor at Wooddale admitted creating a fraudulent transcript and resigned.
In addition to the academic issues involving Robinson, sources told Yahoo! Sports the NCAA has investigated whether a Wooddale P.E. teacher, Rhonda Wilkinson, provided impermissible benefits to the player during his recruitment, including transportation to the Auburn campus on at least one occasion. Wilkinson is an Auburn graduate and fan – her vehicle and home are extensively decorated with Auburn memorabilia.
The NCAA probe is believed to be more widespread than just Robinson, but is not believed to revisit the 2010 allegations involving former star quarterback Cam Newton – allegations Chizik and the school vigorously combated at the time. Auburn went on to win the national title that year after Newton was cleared by the NCAA late in the season.
Do you think the recruitment allegations against the Auburn football program are true? Tell us what you think of this latest NCAA issue!
Source: Yahoo Sports
Image: Bleacher Report