Belton, Texas – Today the NCAA published the public report from its Committee on Infractions (COI) regarding the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor’s self-report of violations in its football program.
UMHB learned of potential rules violations in its football program in March 2018 and immediately launched an in-depth investigation, which concluded with the submission of a comprehensive self-report to the NCAA’s enforcement office in April 2018.
The NCAA’s Committee on Infractions released its report today and accepted all of UMHB’s corrective actions and self-imposed penalties, which included a two-year probation period for the football program, enhanced compliance training, and a $2,500 fine. Head Coach Pete Fredenburg also received a three-month suspension without pay and a three-game suspension at the beginning of the 2018 season.
However, the COI added a penalty of vacating wins and records during the 2016 and 2017 football seasons, including the 2016 DIII National Championship, which UMHB will appeal.
The case involved the provision of local transportation by coaching staff and centered around the loan of Fredenburg’s 2006 Subaru to one student-athlete prior to and during the 2016 season and again during the 2017 season. These actions violated NCAA rules, including impermissible benefits, and head coach responsibility.
Mary Hardin-Baylor also self-reported a violation involving Fredenburg’s loan of the same car to another student-athlete for less than one hour before it broke down and had to be towed.
The case was reviewed through the NCAA Summary Disposition process, a collaborative effort in which the university, Fredenburg, and NCAA enforcement staff agreed upon the facts of the violations. The lack of dispute allowed the NCAA’s Committee on Infractions (COI) to proceed without a formal hearing.
“I’ve spent my entire career as a football coach investing in kids,” said Coach Fredenburg. “In this instance, I unintentionally broke NCAA rules. I regret this, and I accept responsibility.”
President Randy O’Rear said the university had taken the investigation seriously from the first day and fully cooperated with the NCAA.
“Although the university recognized the seriousness of the violations it has self-reported, it respectfully disagreed with the Committee on Infractions decision to add to our self-imposed sanctions the vacating of wins and records for the 2016 and 2017 football seasons,” said O’Rear. “In light of all the circumstances surrounding this case and as a matter of principle for all the student-athletes who had no part in the infractions, we requested an expedited hearing on that one issue of disagreement.” However, the COI declined to remove the added penalty, and UMHB has elected to file an appeal to the NCAA’s Infractions Appeal Committee (IAC).
"Mary Hardin-Baylor is committed to a culture of compliance, and the actions we took reflect that commitment," O’Rear said. “The record shows we responded quickly, investigated vigorously, immediately self-reported the violations, and independently took decisive corrective steps.”
“We have worked diligently with the NCAA during the last 20 months to complete this matter in a cooperative and honorable way, and we will continue to do so during the appeal process,” O’Rear added.
UMHB will be required during the probationary period to notify all football prospects that the school is on probation, and it must file a letter from the president at the end of the probation period affirming that athletics policies and procedures conform to NCAA regulations.
The terms of probation do not prohibit post-season play or impose any recruiting bans. “It is appropriate that the sanctions do not limit the ability of our football team to succeed in the current or future seasons,” said Fredenburg. “Our program is focused on this season. This group of outstanding student-athletes and those who will join our program later have no reason to be concerned about our goals or the direction of our program. We remain focused on building character, developing quality student-athletes and winning championships.”