California State University, Fresno has declared Fresno State men’s basketball player Tito Maddox ineligible for competition and has dismissed him from the team.
Fresno State Interim Athletic Director Scott Johnson took the action today. Maddox was dismissed from the team for National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) rules violations governing the receipt of benefits from a sports agent.
Over the last several weeks Fresno State has worked with the NCAA to investigate claims that Maddox had received additional benefits in the spring of 2001 during the time he was considering whether to enter his name into the National Basketball Association draft. Maddox later decided not to be considered in the NBA draft and to remain in the Fresno State basketball program.
Johnson said Maddox had received information about rules governing such contact from Fresno State coaches and the campus’ compliance officer. The rules were in effect even if Maddox submitted his name for the NBA draft.
“It’s regrettable that this action had to be taken, but this is the second time there has been a problem related to receiving benefits from sports agents,” Johnson said. “This is a clear violation of the NCAA rules and the university’s student athlete code of conduct,” he said.
“It is Fresno State’s policy to report any violation we become aware of and to work together with the NCAA,” Johnson said. “We will continue that practice.”
Last fall the Legislation and Interpretations Review Subcommittee of the NCAA ruled Maddox had violated the rule governing contact with sports agents.
As a result of that ruling, the NCAA staff ruled that Maddox was ineligible to compete in eight Fresno State men’s basketball games. During the review, the University already had held Maddox out from playing a total of six regular season games. Maddox agreed to repay benefits paid by a sports agent at that time. The amateurism rule prohibits student athletes from receiving any special benefits as a result of their status as a student athlete.