NCAA bans Georgia Tech from 2020 tournament

Josh Pastner wearing a suit and tie standing in front of a crowd

The Georgia Tech men's basketball program has been banned from 2019-20 postseason play by the NCAA stemming from violations found by the NCAA's Committee on Infractions.

Georgia Tech's punishment - some of which was self-reported - included the postseason ban, the probation, a reduction in scholarships and fines and came from two Level 1 charges by the NCAA.

Tech will be the third team in the past six seasons to miss the ACC's signature event because of NCAA sanctions.

The NCAA ruled that Georgia Tech must also vacate all wins in which ineligible players were used.

The NCAA discovered that LaBarrie had arranged with Jack to pay then-prospect Wendell Carter $300 to visit them at an Atlanta strip club and improperly communicated while recruiting Carter during the 2016-17 recruiting cycle.

In one instance, a former Yellow Jackets assistant coach arranged for a recruit and his host, a member of the Georgia Tech team, to "interact with a booster", who took them to his home, a strip club and treated them to a "free meal at a lounge owned by a local National Basketball Association player".

"It goes without saying that we as a committee firmly believe that adult entertainment has no place in college sports", he said. "It is particularly abhorrent in the recruiting process where coaches and others in a position of trust are responsible for the wellbeing of high school students visiting their campus".

Bell also was charged with multiple rules violations, including Level I violations, which are the most serious under NCAA rules.

"Both sets of violations occurred because men's basketball coaching staff members invited outside individuals into their program", the decision read.

"The university permitted these outside individuals to interact with their student-athletes", the committee said in a press release.

The NBA player was not identified, but Jarrett Jack was on the Hawks' roster in 2016. Jack had signed with New Orleans a week before training camp. The school was given 14 days to provide that information to the governing body. LaBarrie was placed on leave early that season and resigned in February 2017.

The impermissible benefits reportedly involved boosters with a reported $2,000 going to players in 2016 and 2017.

Dealing a major blow to Pastner's efforts to rebuild the struggling Atlantic Coast Conference program, the NCAA hit Georgia Tech with four years of probation for major recruiting violations committed by Pastner's former assistant coach and an ex-friend. Bell also allegedly attempted to influence former Memphis player Markel Crawford to transfer to Tech.

The allegations against Bell led to an exchange of lawsuits between Pastner and Bell and his girlfriend, Jennifer Pendley.

Pastner and his attorneys have denied the allegations, and a Title IX investigation conducted by attorneys hired by Georgia Tech cleared Pastner in the matter in June 2018.



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