Oregon's women's track and field team has been placed on probation through 2020 after the NCAA determined that an adjunct instructor changed the grades for a female sprinter to remain eligible. The Oregonian identified the sprinter as Jasmine Todd.
In 2017, Oregon received an NCAA notice of allegations into the football, men's and women's basketball teams and the women's track and field program for had committed several Level II rules violations. Many of the allegations were self-reported by Oregon.
One of the violations surrounded an incident during the 2016 winter quarter, when the instructor changed one of Todd's grade from an F to a B-minus.
From the NCAA decision:
"When the adjunct instructor informed the student-athlete that he could not change the grade to an incomplete, she told him that an F would be a problem for her because she needed at least a D- to maintain eligibility for practice and competition. The adjunct instructor responded that a D- was not accurate because she had not earned it and because the work she submitted during the first two weeks of the course demonstrated A+ potential. Accordingly, the adjunct instructor proposed an alternative: He would change the student-athlete's final grade to a B-, which was a "grade-to-date" based on the assignments she submitted during the first two weeks of the course, plus the four papers she turned in after the course concluded. He had not graded those papers but looked them over and estimated they were in the C-/D+ range. However, the B- would be contingent on the student-athlete's agreement to re-take the course over the summer. At that point, he would change her B- to the grade she earned after completing all the coursework. Student-athlete 2 agreed, and the adjunct instructor used the institution's online grading system to change the F to a B-."
The instructor said that he was not aware of the NCAA rules and would have made the accommodation for any other student, according to the Oregonian. The university decided that the grading policy was violated but the athlete did not violate the university's academic misconduct policy. Oregon has rescinded the grade and revoked her diploma.
The NCAA enforcement staff alleged that Oregon violated NCAA academic misconduct rules. Oregon disagreed but the NCAA rules interpretation staff decided the grade change fell in line with a violation of the NCAA's academic misconduct rules.
The Ducks must vacate all records that were set while the athlete was ineligible.
Todd was set to race for Oregon at the NCAA West Preliminary championships in 2016 before she was informed that she would not be eligible to compete for the Ducks. At the 2016 NCAA Indoor Track and Field Championship, Todd scored five points for the Ducks with her fourth place finish in the women's 60-meter dash. Oregon won the women's team title by three points over Arkansas. Oregon will get to keep the title because Todd was not ineligible when she competed.
Todd is now a professional runner for Nike.