The NCAA suspended DePaul coach Dave Leitao for the first three games of the 2019-20 season on Tuesday afternoon for "failing to promote an atmosphere of compliance" and failing to “prevent violations from occurring in his program,” according to a release from the NCAA. The Blue Demons' men's basketball program has also been placed on probation for three years.
A former DePaul associate head coach violated the rules when he knowingly directed the former assistant director of basketball operations to provide impermissible recruiting benefits to a recruit, according to the release.
The Division I Committee on Infractions panel determined that Leitao violated NCAA head coach responsibility rules regarding ethical conduct because he did not do enough to prevent these violations from occurring within his program. His lack of intervention was what led to his suspension.
“The head coach created an environment where staff members did not report violations or consult with the compliance staff but chose to remain silent. The head coach simply did not ensure a compliant program,” said the committee in the NCAA release.
While no postseason bans or scholarship limitations were imposed, the organization also mandated a vacation of records in which the men’s basketball student-athlete competed while ineligible, recruiting restrictions and a $5,000 fine plus 1% of the men's basketball program budget.
Leitao is in his second tenure as DePaul's head coach after leading the team from 2002-05. He led the Blue Demons to a 19–17 record last season as they finished tied for last in the Big East with just seven conference wins under their belt.