The News Courier in Athens, Alabama


March 27, 2013

Coaches survive show-cause orders


Others, however, struggle to recover from show-cause orders, years after the penalties expire.

Twelve years after receiving a three-year order for reportedly watching recruits during a pickup game, former Buffalo coach Tim Cohane is suing the NCAA in federal court over what he calls a botched investigation in which his former players were threatened with losing their scholarships if they didn't incriminate their former coach.

Cohane is now associate head coach at Roger Williams University in Rhode Island, a Division III school. He's also an adjunct law professor whose online faculty bio says he attended law school to "be able to represent student-athletes and coaches against the (NCAA)."

Kent State coach Rob Senderoff, a former Sampson assistant at Indiana, successfully petitioned the infractions committee in November 2008 to allow his hiring as an assistant at the school where he had previously spent four years despite a three-year show cause order for his role in the impermissible phone calls case.

Former Kent State athletic director Laing Kennedy, now retired, joined Senderoff at the committee hearing in a show of support. Kennedy's successor then hired Senderoff as head coach in 2011.

Like Lopes, Senderoff acknowledged his mistakes — though both pointed out that the NCAA in January agreed to allow coaches to make unlimited calls and send as many text messages as they want to recruits who have completed their sophomore year of high school. The association now plans to reconsider those changes in response to a swift backlash from some football coaches and athletic directors, including those in the Big Ten.

"I certainly am in the minority," Senderoff said. "I do think you can survive and bounce back from it. I don't know if I would have been able to go to another place. I'm more than grateful. I understand how fortunate I am."

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