The Most Notable College Sports Cheating Scandals
For as long as there have been sports, there has been cheating. When it comes to college athletics and the NCAA, most of the cheating scandals occur off the field, but nevertheless have gone down in history as momentous college sports scandals.
Because college sports is a multimillion-dollar, nonprofit, amateur operation, there are very strict rules about what constitutes cheating. What makes for college sports cheating scandals? Players accepting money of any kind is a college sports cheating scandal. Football players receiving gifts of any kind for playing are considered college football cheating scandals. Undermining academic integrity is a college sports scandal as well.
Vote up the controversies below that you think are the biggest college cheating scandals of all time. One thing this list will prove is that you never want to get on the NCAA's bad side.
- Photo: Tim White (OmahaBuff) / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 2.51378 VOTES
Colorado Recruited Players with Strippers and Drugs
Colorado head football coach Gary Barnett was caught luring recruits with strippers, sex, and drugs. He also mocked Katie Hnida, a female kicker on the team, after she was allegedly raped. Barnett was forced to resign.
- Photo: Adam Glanzman / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY 2.02426 VOTES
Louisville Used Sex Workers To Entice Recruits (And Keep Players)
In 2018, the NCAA stripped the University of Louisville's men's basketball team of its 2013 national championship title over a recruiting scandal, where coaches used sex workers to entice recruits and keep players happy at the university. Coach Rick Pitino resigned over the scandal, and the team faced several infractions on the team, including a $600,000 fine.
- Photo: Julie Lazalier Harvey / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.03311 VOTES
The 1989 Oklahoma Sooners Cocaine Scandal
In 1989 University of Oklahoma Sooners football head coach Barry Switzer was caught offering illegal cars and money to players. Things only got worse for the school when the subsequent investigation saw quarterback Charles Thompson charged with cocaine possession.
- Photo: Ines Hegedus-Garcia / Flickr / CC BY 2.04242 VOTES
The University of Miami Defrauds the Federal Government
From 1989 to 1991 the University of Miami assisted athletes by forging applications for federal Pell Grant money, receiving approximately $220,000 in funds. The NCAA issued a one year ban on post-season play and three years of probation.
- Photo: Tnbailey09 / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 3.05447 VOTES
18 Years of Cheating at UNC
From 1993 to 2011 the University of North Carolina helped students get good grades with little work. Hundreds of classes required little work or had no faculty involvement and many of the students involved were student-athletes. Surprisingly, the NCAA concluded that UNC's wrongdoing was not conclusive, and the university evaded punishment.
- Photo: Matthew Tosh / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 2.06233 VOTES
The University of Alabama Bribes Albert Means to Play for Them
In 1999 the University of Alabama paid high school student Albert Means an estimated $200,000 to come play football for the them. In 2002 the NCAA punished the university by reducing scholarships, issuing a two-year bowl ban, and placing the school on probation for five years.