ESPN‘s Joe Schad reports that the Florida Gators are one of five programs being accused of illegally contacting USC Trojans running back Dillon Baxter about a transfer.
Florida – along with Alabama, Oregon, Washington and Fresno State – allegedly reached out to Baxter (a true freshman) on June 10, according to USC. This potentially occurred one day before the NCAA announced that schools could recruit the Trojans’ juniors and seniors. Players wishing to leave will not have to sit out a year.
Baxter does not fall under these guidelines and told USC director of compliance Matt Billings about the illegal contact immediately; the Trojans have officially requested that the Pac-10 reach out to and speak with the accused parties.
“I just met with (Baxter) and he told me that he received phone calls from five institutions (June 10th),” Billings wrote to Pac-10 associate commissioner for governance and enforcement Ron Barker, according to ESPN. “All of the institutions asked if he was interested in transferring [from] USC due to the NCAA decision. Would you please speak with these schools to remind them they cannot speak to this student athlete?”
Gators associate athletics director for communications Steve McClain, Crimson Tide associate athletics director for football communications Jeff Purinton and Ducks head coach Chip Kelly have all denied the respective accusations.
The allegations, if determined to be true, would amount to secondary violations.
OGGOA will have more on this breaking story as it is made available.