Dec. 17, 1999
Following is the statement of Rev. Edward A. Malloy, C.S.C., president of the University of Notre Dame, in response to the release of the final report of NCAA violations in the University's football program. The NCAA has placed the football program on probation for two years and reduced football scholarships by one each in 2000/01 and 2001/02.
"This is not a good day for Notre Dame. We are embarrassed by these incidents, troubled that they occurred, and we have taken action to deal with the issues involved.
"Whether these incidents are characterized as secondary or major, they happened, and that is unacceptable and a matter of the highest concern to us. The incidents demonstrate the need for us to impress again on our student-athletes the behavioral expectations we have for them and the moral beliefs that underpin those expectations.
"We have high standards for the conduct of athletics at Notre Dame and we will not compromise those standards. I can't tell you that Notre Dame never again will have a problem in athletics. But I can tell you that Father Beauchamp and I and Mike Wadsworth already have made clear to all concerned the absolute need for constant vigilance, for prompt and complete reporting, and for early and decisive response when potential problems are detected, or even suspected. To back up this commitment, we have taken the following steps:
"-We have disbanded not only the Quarterback Club in football, but also all fan organizations in all varsity sports. The NCAA staff has told us that this is the first time any university has taken such a step.
"-We have instituted an 'early warning' communications policy in athletics which requires immediate reporting of any situation that suggests improper conduct or potential University or NCAA rules violations. The policy also states that failure to act in such a situation will itself be considered a serious matter.
"-We have expanded our mandatory personal development program for student-athletes to almost 40 hours over four years. The program educates student-athletes to make the right decisions on difficult issues including drinking, gambling, and University and NCAA rules.
"-We have conducted a comprehensive external review of policies and procedures in the athletic department.
"Notre Dame has a proud tradition in athletics, not only for doing well but also for doing right. We regret these incidents, and I pledge my own and my administration's most diligent efforts to avoid such problems in the future."