SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Syracuse University will conduct an internal investigation into allegations of NCAA violations by its men's basketball program, the university announced today.
The inquiry by the school's general legal counsel will begin immediately and its findings will be presented to Chancellor Melvin A. Eggers by the end of the spring semester, said Robert Hill, the university's vice president for public relations.
The probe is independent of any action that might be taken by the National Collegiate Athletic Assn. So far, the association has not indicated whether it will conduct its own investigation of the allegations made last month in a series of stories by the Syracuse Post-Standard, Hill said.
"The purpose of the inquiry is to discover the truth. No one is in a position at the university to confirm or deny anything," Hill said.
The newspaper reported that Syracuse, undefeated and ranked third in the nation this season, may have broken several NCAA rules, such as allowing players to receive merchandise, cut-rate use of cars and even cash gifts from boosters.
Among the most serious allegations raised in the newspaper's seven-month investigation was that one player said one of his grades was changed so he could remain academically eligible and play in an important Big East Conference contest the season Syracuse went to the NCAA championship game.
The Syracuse basketball program has been ranked continuously since March 5, 1984, and is one of only 10 Division I schools with more than 1,300 victories.
Two lawyers from Bond, Schoeneck & King, the school's legal counsel, will supervise the inquiry. They are Thomas S. Evans, senior partner in charge of the firm's work for the university and head of its business department, and John J. Dee, senior partner in the firm's litigation department.