UTEP Football, Softball Programs Face Level II NCAA Violations
The UTEP football and softball programs are facing Level II-standard penalties, according to an agreement that was sent by the Division I Committee on Infractions on Tuesday morning.
The majority of the penalties stem from exceeding allotted practice time and having too many coaches involved with practices.
Read the full April 2021 UTEP Negotiated Resolution.
STATEMENT FROM DIRECTOR OF ATHLETICS JIM SENTER
“We alerted our compliance staff as soon as we became aware of the potential infractions. I would like to thank them for their diligence in conducting interviews, compiling information and submitting a thorough report to the NCAA. We are committed to running our department with integrity. We will continue to monitor all of our sports programs to ensure that they are operating in compliance with NCAA rules and regulations. We will also continue to provide comprehensive rules education to all of our coaches and staff.”
STATEMENT FROM FOOTBALL HEAD COACH DANA DIMEL
“I am committed and will ensure that we do a better job of following all NCAA rules. It is my responsibility to create an atmosphere of compliance on my staff and within our football program. I acknowledge that I need to do a better job moving forward, and accept the NCAA’s penalties for this violation.”
Football NCAA Violations
The agreement confirms that noncoaching football staff members participated in coaching activities. There were defensive and offensive quality control coaches that participated in practice. Because of this, UTEP surpassed the maximum coaches that teams are allowed to have from the 2018-2020 seasons.
Head coach Dana Dimel will be responsible for the violations, according to the Negotiated Resolution, claiming that he "did not monitor his staff and detect the impermissible skills instruction."
Under previous head coach Tobin Echo-Hawk, the Miners exceeded daily and weekly hour limitations for practice and individual workout times for athletes. Echo-Hawk also didn't provide a mandatory day off for student-athletes.
In addition, UTEP had graduate assistants participate in extra workout sessions, practices and contests. This also was a violation of the maximum allowable coaches, spanning from 2016 to 2019.
Penalties for both programs
The penalties were approved by the Committee on Infractions. They are as follows:
- One year of probation.
- A $5,000 fine.
- A one-year show-cause order for the former softball head coach, including a four-week suspension from all coaching activities and a suspension from 15% of regular- season contests at any school that employs her.
- A one-year show-cause order for the football head coach, including a four-day suspension from all coaching activities and a 10-day suspension from off-campus recruiting during the 2020-21 football contact period.
- A reduction in permissible countable athletically related activities hours in softball from 20 to 18 during the regular season and from eight to seven during the off-season during the 2021-22 academic year.
- A reduction in the number of softball countable coaches by one for six days of practice during the 2021-22 academic year.
- A reduction in the number of football countable coaches by one for six days of practice during the 2021-22 academic year.