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Jurkin-Perea: What to know

Hanner Perea (pictured above) and Peter Jurkin will each be required to sit out the first nine games of this season.

In the end, the lengthy saga surrounding the eligibility of Peter Jurkin and Hanner Mosquera-Perea offered a simple ending. The NCAA determined that Mark Adams, who provided certain benefits to each player during their prep careers, qualified as a “booster,” thereby making anything he provided to either player through the A-HOPE program impermissible.

Let’s try to break all of this down, piece by piece and player by player, to better understand all aspects of this case.

Hanner Perea and Peter Jurkin

*The first important thing to understand in this ruling is that the most culpable party, really, is Indiana’s compliance department, which should have red-flagged Adams’ contributions when he reported them in 2008 (that’s when Tijan Jobe, an A-HOPE alum, joined the program).

Neither Perea nor Jurkin did anything wrong here, and in a way, neither did Adams. He was up-front about his contributions, and everything he provided to each player was, he believed, protected under the umbrella given to the A-HOPE program. Adams was, by the way, also Perea’s legal guardian. His booster status, in the eyes of the NCAA, trumped all of that.

*The monetary penalties mentioned for each player ($6,000 for Jurkin and $8,000 for Perea) are numbers meant to represent the total benefits received, so that’s not a flat amount of money either got, but rather a placeholder for whatever was provided them or paid for them by Adams.

Generally, in these cases, players are expected to pay most or all of the assigned monetary amount back. In this instance, each player only has to pay a fraction of that total, because the NCAA recognizes, essentially, that Adams is only a booster in the most technical sense of the word. Jurkin will have to pay just $250, and Perea $1,590.

Indiana’s appeal of each player’s nine-game suspension will argue that the NCAA should be as lenient with its punishment in number of games as it is being in its financial penalties. For more on that appeal, read our story on the subject here.

*The suspensions will begin immediately, and technically speaking, both players will be “withheld from competition.” This will rule each player out for Indiana’s games in the Legends Classic and the Big Ten/ACC Challenge game against North Carolina and put them in line to return in time for the Dec. 15 Crossroads Classic game against Butler.

*There is still no word on when Perea might be fully healthy for competition.

Mark Adams

*First of all, my sense is that there’s a real hope on Indiana’s part that Adams isn’t viewed as any kind of villain here. He was up-front, according to IU’s report, about his contributions, and throughout the process, he felt he had acted in good faith and was allowed to provide these benefits. The NCAA simply ruled otherwise.

*According to the report, Adams is not allowed to have any contact with the men’s basketball staff for one full year, beginning on July 1 of this year. So he will not be allowed to have direct contact with the staff from now until July 1, 2013.

That does not mean Indiana cannot recruit players out of the Indiana Elite AAU program, simply that he cannot be involved in those recruitments until next July.

*There is one allowance for this — Adams is Perea’s legal guardian, so Indiana’s staff can speak with him specifically about Perea if need be. Those conversations, per a department source, will all be documented and turned over to the NCAA. Such documentation is specific to this case. Indiana does not (and does not need to) document every conversation between the staff and a player’s guardian normally.

*I spoke with Adams tonight, and he said he has continually sought clarity from the NCAA regarding what nonprofit organizations like A-HOPE can provide international students and what they can’t. He said he’s never gotten an answer. I’ll have more from that conversation later.

*My sense is that this means Indiana can’t recruit A-HOPE players anymore. The NCAA worked through this case with Indiana, but in the future, I doubt it would be even this lenient, considering it has now and forever established that Adams is, in the association’s eyes, a booster by the letter of their law.

For his part, Adams said he isn’t sure whether IU still can and just provide the NCAA with immediate notice or whether this will keep IU from getting involved with A-HOPE players from here on out.

*And yes, Mark Adams will always be a booster, according to the NCAA. Booster status, to my understanding, does not run out or expire. He will always be considered to have this relationship with Indiana Athletics, and therefore any benefits he passes to recruits would be deemed impermissible if that recruit went to Indiana.

To be clear, he can still run the A-HOPE program and provide A-HOPE athletes with many of the same things he provided Perea and Jurkin. Indiana just can’t be involved, or else his booster status becomes an immediate obstacle.

*Adams can still attend Indiana games. He just can’t speak directly to the IU staff until the middle of next year.

The program

*The program will appeal the nine-game suspensions (which is what they are; let’s call a spade a spade, please). IU’s case for a lessening of the suspensions is documented above. Keep in mind, the suspensions would only be reduced. They wouldn’t go away entirely.

*Indiana was fined $5,000 for playing Tijan Jobe without proper player certification. The program/department does not dispute this, and the fine will be paid out of the department’s general budget.

Indiana should have gone through proper investigation of Adams’ status when he reported his $185 worth of contributions in 2008, and it did not, making Jobe ineligible (not permanently -- there will be no forfeiture of records; he just wasn’t properly certified). That’s why Indiana doesn’t dispute the mistake or the fine.

*This is the actual secondary violation Indiana reported. No program violations were reported regarding Jurkin or Perea, because Indiana was going through this process with the NCAA’s Basketball Focus Group when it discovered that it had screwed up in 2008. IU reported that secondary violation, and the NCAA accepted the violation and levied its penalty, so that’s done.

*To be clear: Indiana, in congress with the Basketball Focus Group, looked into several different aspects of Adams’ relationship with both players and with the IU program.

One source told me the two parties considered IU’s relationship to the Indiana Elite program, the department’s allowance for the adidas May Classic to be held at Assembly Hall and Cook Hall (it no longer uses those facilities) and Indiana’s employment of Drew Adams. They also looked further into A-HOPE, and Adams told me he’s opened up bank accounts to the NCAA to support his claim that he never used his money, instead of A-HOPE money, to provide what he did to Jurkin and Perea.

In the end, the only impropriety found was Adams’ $185 worth of contributions, which I think will also factor into Indiana’s argument in its appeal, that the NCAA found what seems like a somewhat trifling issue.

*There’s a disturbing precedent that’s set here, one that almost surely cannot stand.

Essentially, this says that anyone who ever gives any money to a university athletics department voluntarily (so not tuition, etc.) will be considered a booster forever. That would seem to include family members, so does that mean a mother or father is somehow creating problems for a future son or daughter if he or she becomes a recruitable athlete?

That bothers me significantly, and it’s something I’ll offer more thoughts on eventually in this.

There’s a lot to digest here, but we wanted to lay it all plain here. Please do not hesitate to ask further questions on the board, and we will try to answer them as quickly as possible.

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