Reports: Minnesota self-reporting minor NCAA violation involving P.J. Fleck
According to the Star Tribune and the Pioneer Press, Minnesota is self-reporting a minor NCAA violation that involved P.J. Fleck’s contact with a former player at Western Michigan.
An athletics spokesperson confirmed that report to the Star Tribune.
While the violation involved one of Fleck’s former players, Minnesota athletic director Mark Coyle reportedly confirmed with Western Michigan that Fleck is not recruiting his former players.
Still, Coyle admitted that a violation of illegal contact doesn’t have to involve a full recruiting pitch.
“From my understanding, even if a coach sends a former student-athlete a text that even says ‘happy birthday,’ that’s a violation,” Coyle told the St. Paul Pioneer Press, which first reported news of the minor violation.
Last week, former Western Michigan linebacker Robert Spillane was granted his release from the university. It was reported that Fleck had contact with Spillane and other Broncos
But that was denied by Spillane, who tweeted that his transfer had “nothing to do with Fleck or Minnesota.”
— Robert Spillane (@14rspillane) March 1, 2017
Fleck did flip six Western Michigan recruits to Minnesota during his first weekend on the job (and several more), but those players weren’t enrolled in the university yet.
Minor self-reported NCAA violations don’t often carry significant punishments. It isn’t uncommon for athletic departments to report 20-30 minor NCAA violations in a given year.