NCAA committee on infractions penalizes BYU in Nick Emery infractions case

Due to standout guard Nick Emery's involvement with boosters, BYU must now vacate 47 wins and forfeit a scholarship, the NCAA's committee on infractions announced Friday.

The school announced it will appeal the ruling.

The committee on infractions, per its report, penalized BYU after it discovered four boosters had given Emery nearly $12,000 in impermissible benefits -- including trips, meals and the use of a car.

Emery, who is not named in the report, withdrew from school before the 2017-18 season after BYU acknowledged his involvement in the case. Emery, who averaged 13.1 points per game during the 2016-17 season, has re-enrolled but is suspended for the first nine games of this season.

Emery participated in 47 wins between the 2015-16 and 2016-17 seasons. Every win will be vacated unless BYU wins its appeal. In addition to receiving two years' probation, the school was also forced to disassociate with one of the boosters and pay a $5,000 fine, both self-imposed by the university.

Per the report, Emery was given free Broadway tickets, a weekend stay at a resort and complimentary golf outings by boosters affiliated with the program. The penalty comes after the Commission on College Basketball, led by former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, introduced a series of initiatives that created more severe penalties for players, coaches and programs that violate NCAA rules in the wake of the FBI investigation that rocked the sport.

"Although this case involved only one student-athlete, the [committee on infractions] noted in its report that it was concerned about the level of unmonitored access the four different boosters had with the prominent student-athlete," the NCAA said in its report. "The COI was particularly troubled that one of the boosters had access to the men's basketball locker room and used that access to provide the student-athlete with cash.

"The fact that a Brigham Young mentorship program connected one of the boosters with the student-athlete was also concerning to the COI. The committee emphasized that the limited scope of the case does not alleviate a university's responsibility to educate and monitor boosters and detect inappropriate behaviors."

In a statement, BYU said it will fight the COI's ruling because it had no knowledge of Emery's violations.

"The vacation-of-records penalty is extremely harsh and unprecedented given the details of the case," the school's statement said. "For more than two decades, the NCAA has not required an institution to vacate games in similar cases where the COI found there was no institutional knowledge of or involvement in the violation by either the coaching staff or other university personnel.

"In fact, this sanction includes the most severe vacation-of-record penalty ever imposed in the history of NCAA Division I basketball for infractions that included no institutional knowledge or involvement. In addition, in the case most similar to this situation, appropriate penalties were imposed, but no wins were vacated. BYU believes the vacation-of-records penalty is unfair and not consistent with recent NCAA precedent."

BYU coach Dave Rose, in a statement, said he was "very disappointed with today's NCAA ruling" and supports the university's plan to appeal.

The NCAA's report said the COI punished that school as an institution due to the "competitive advantage" the boosters provided the program.

"The university argued that the vacation of records penalty was not appropriate; however, after hearing arguments, the panel determined it was appropriate based on the scope of the violations," the report said. "The decision noted that vacation of records is an important penalty that addresses competitive advantage gained over other NCAA member schools that follow the rules. It added that the penalty serves to motivate member schools to act proactively to deter, detect and address violations immediately, with the understanding that a failure to do so could result in a significant penalty.

"Specific to this case, the committee said the penalty holds the university accountable for failing to withhold an ineligible student-athlete from competition."