U.C.F. officials accepted the resignation of Athletic Director Keith Tribble, who the N.C.A.A. alleges “violated principles of ethical conduct” by providing false or misleading information to the N.C.A.A. The university’s wide receivers coach, David Kelly, also stepped down. The U.C.F. head basketball coach, Donnie Jones, is being suspended without pay for three conference games by the university and will receive a letter of reprimand.
These actions are considered pre-emptive moves by the university as a nod to the seriousness of the allegations. Further action could be taken by the N.C.A.A. when its investigation is complete.
The actions came because of an N.C.A.A. investigation into U.C.F. and its dealings with Ken Caldwell, who the N.C.A.A. says is “a recruiter for a professional sports agency,” and his associate, a youth coach named Brandon Bender. A New York Times article in April helped prompt the N.C.A.A. investigation and showed multiple ties between Caldwell and the agency of the prominent N.B.A. agent Andy Miller. (Miller denied any affiliation with Caldwell.)
The N.C.A.A. notice of allegations claims that Caldwell and Bender tried to help U.C.F. in the recruitment of six basketball players and five football players. It is unclear how many of the 11 attended the university, as their names were redacted from the release.
Bender said that he respected U.C.F.’s decision but that he did not “agree with the David Kelly situation.” Caldwell declined comment. In April he claimed that the New York Times article would “make me a legend in Chicago.”
The N.C.A.A. identified Caldwell and Bender as “representatives of the university’s athletic interest” because “certain institutional staff members were aware of Caldwell and Bender’s activities while others were involved.”
The N.C.A.A. notice of allegations shows Caldwell and Bender exchanging e-mails with Tribble and Kelly with titles like: “UCF Taking over Kentucky by storm!” Those e-mails, which refer to U.C.F. recruiting players in the Louisville area, where Bender is based, were requested by the N.C.A.A. The notice of allegations also charges that Tribble helped arrange an out-of-state tuition waiver, valued at $9,567, to someone associated with Caldwell.
The U.C.F. president, John Hitt, said that the N.C.A.A. issues would not affect the university’s move to the Big East, which is considered inevitable. Tribble declined comment when reached by text message on Wednesday night.