NCAA rules Geno Auriemma's phone call to Mo'Ne Davis was violation

Thursday September 4th, 2014

The NCAA has determined that a call made by Connecticut women's basketball coach Geno Auriemma to Little League World Series star Mo'Ne Davis was a secondary violation, according to the Hartford Courant

Auriemma made what he said was a two-minute congratulatory phone call to Davis after she helped lead her Philadelphia team to the LLWS U.S. semifinals. 

On Wednesday, the UConn coach revealed that an unknown school had filed a complaint with the American Athletic Conference, saying the phone call was a recruiting violation. 

Davis, who also plays basketball, has stated her desire to play the sport for UConn in college and often wore a Connecticut sweatshirt while in Williamsport. 

Watch a young Mo'ne Davis breaking ankles on the basketball court

The school said Auriemma asked permission from UConn's compliance department before making the call. He was "advised such a call would be permissible since Davis is not considered a prospective student-athlete by the NCAA and the call was to be congratulatory rather than recruiting in nature."

According to the Courant, secondary violations do not typically result in NCAA penalties. Corrective action is typically taken instead. UConn said it accepts the decision, but does not agree with it. 

From a statement by Connecticut athletic director Warde Manuel:

"While UConn will continue to adhere to the NCAA and conference rules, I believe that upon request from a friend to Geno, a proud Philadelphian, to call a young lady representing the City of Brotherly Love who had accomplished historic feats in the Little League World Series, should not constitute a violation especially due to the fact that NCAA rules do not classify Mo'ne as a prospective student-athlete."

- Molly Geary

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