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BEAT REPORTING

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March 28, 1999

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ANALYZING THE POSITIONS

Pioneer Press staff writers George Dohrmann, Dave Shaffer and Judith Yates Borger analyze the principals in the University of Minnesota academic fraud investigation, directed by University of Minnesota President Mark Yudof.

MARK YUDOF

Appointed president on July 1, 1997.

Exposure: This is the first major controversy he has faced as president.

Where he stands: Has backed Clem Haskins while taking swift action to launch outside investigation. Has been the university’s principal spokesman on the allegations.

What’s at stake: His reputation among professors, who are watching this case closely, could be decided by how he handles this case. Not to mention his relationship with the athletic department and boosters. His state funding request is unlikely to be hurt by the investigation.

THE WITNESSES

RUSS ARCHAMBAULT

He played from 1996-98 before being dismissed from the team for disciplinary reasons.

Allegations: Said Jan Gangelhoff did course work for him and believes that Clem Haskins and assistant coaches were aware of the activities of Gangelhoff and her sister, Jeanne Payer. He also told at least three Twin Cities media outlets between March 1 and March 20 that Haskins gave him money. His most recent account, at a news conference last Tuesday, is that Haskins gave him money about eight times during the nearly two years he was a player.

Strength: Gangelhoff’s files contain course work bearing his name.

Weaknesses: His version of events on the payments has been inconsistent. The Pioneer Press could not corroborate his allegation of getting money. In one case, important facts were denied by a central figure. In general, cash payments are very difficult to prove.

ELAYNE DONAHUE

Director of academic counseling from 1983-1998, she supervised the counselors and tutors who assisted athletes with their academic work.

Allegations: Believes basketball program lacked institutional control. Donahue criticized a 1994 organizational change that she says gave Clem Haskins authority over Alonzo Newby, thereby eliminating the institutional separation between athletics and academics. The change was rescinded three years later.

Strengths: Internal memos obtained by Pioneer Press show she was quick to warn administrators about potential problems. Also, memo shows she ordered Gangelhoff to not continue tutoring after winter quarter of 1998, a directive that Gangelhoff says was ignored by Haskins and Newby.

Weakness: Critics can argue that she had long-running feud with Haskins and McKinley Boston, bringing her motivation into doubt.

JAN GANGELHOFF

Office manager in the university’s academic counseling unit from 1994 to 1998. Hired as official tutor in winter quarter of 1998.

Allegations: She says she did more than 400 pieces of course work for 20 basketball players from 1993 to 1998, including term papers that contained duplicate passages or were turned in by two or more players for different classes. She also says she was paid $3,000 by Clem Haskins to tutor Antoine Broxsie in spring 1998. She says Haskins knew she was doing course work.

Strength: She has more than 225 examples of course work she says she did and the players turned in.

Weaknesses: She clarified original statement to say that the $3,000 from Haskins came through an intermediary. Also at first said she had no direct knowledge that Haskins knew she was doing course work but later said Haskins advised her on how to make it look authentic.

ALEXANDRA GOULDING

University doctoral candidate in sociology who worked for one day as a tutor in the basketball program four years ago.

Allegation: She said that in her first tutoring session, she wrote a paper for Courtney James. She said she told Clem Haskins and Alonzo Newby what she had done and that she would not do course work for any players again. She said the next day she was denied a contract to continue working as a tutor.

Strengths: Goulding kept a pay stub from her one day of work that backs up part of her allegation. With no strong ties to Jan Gangelhoff and her sister, she provides fresh indications of academic fraud.

Weaknesses: It’s her word against the word of Newby and Haskins if the two men deny the incident. James has already said he does not remember her.

RICK MARSDEN

He joined the academic counseling unit in 1984, but mainly worked with

players in sports other than basketball. Marsden, who is gay, is suing the university for sexual harassment.

Allegation: He filed an affidavit in his lawsuit Jan. 6 stating that a basketball coach asked him in 1986 to do course work for a player. Later, he identified the coach as Clem Haskins.

Strength: Sworn affidavits make for compelling evidence, especially when other witnesses in this investigation will not have to meet the same standard of honesty.

Weakness: Critics can say that his allegations are merely a vindictive ploy by a disgruntled employee who is already suing the school for something else.

JEANNE PAYER

Jan Gangelhoff’s sister. Served as tutor to athletes during 1996-97 school year.

Allegations: Payer says she also did course work for players during the 1997-98 school year with Alonzo Newby’s knowledge, and that she served as the intermediary for a $3,000 cash payment to Gangelhoff that she says Newby delivered.

Strengths: She also kept copies of the work she did for players and some of it matches work done by her sister. She has been a vocal supporter of her sister’s allegations.

Weakness: Critics could argue that her loyalty to her sister limits her objectivity.

UNDER FIRE

McKINLEY BOSTON

Vice president for Athletics and Student Development

1995-present.

Concern: Internal memos indicate Boston approved decision that made basketball’s Alonzo Newby the only academic counselor who reported directly to the athletic department. Former academic counseling director Elayne Donahue also says he ignored warnings of a potential problem.

Where he stands: Initial comments suggested he was distancing himself

from Jan Gangelhoff’s allegations, saying that only Newby should have known who was tutoring the players. Has been quiet since.

What’s at stake: Even if he keeps his job, the allegations and investigation will be an embarrassing bump in a long career in athletics.

 

MARK DIENHART

Director of athletics since 1995.

Concern: Elayne Donahue alleges Dienhart ignored warnings that Jan Gangelhoff was tutoring players in violation of academic counseling department rules and that he allowed the academic counseling arm of the men’s basketball program to be run without any institutional control.

Where he stands: He’s not talking. It’s unclear what, if anything, he knew. His defense might be that Clem Haskins went over his head to McKinley Boston, to get Alonzo Newby under the athletic department’s control. But in documents obtained by the Pioneer Press, he clearly supported the original move, saying it would benefit basketball’s most "at-risk’’ students.

What’s at stake: His job. The big risk is that the investigation could conclude that his department suffered from a lack of institutional control.

CLEM HASKINS

Gophers coach 1986-present.

Concern: Jan Gangelhoff, the former office manager, said Haskins knew she was doing course work for players in violation of NCAA and student conduct code rules and that he advised her how to make the work look authentic. Academic counselor Rick Marsden alleges in an affidavit that Haskins asked him to do course work for players and he refused. Graduate student Alexandra Goulding said that on her first day as a tutor, she told Haskins she had done a paper for a player. Former player Russ Archambault has made uncorroborated allegations about receiving cash payments from Haskins. Haskins must explain why Gangelhoff went on a team trip to Hawaii when she was not supposed to be tutoring.

Where he stands: Has denied wrongdoing in a statement.

What’s at stake: Has previously hinted at retirement and could be asked to leave sooner than he would have liked. Also could be fired.

ALONZO NEWBY

Academic counselor for basketball team 1992-present.

Concern: Jan Gangelhoff has alleged Newby knew she and her sister, Jeanne Payer, did course work for players. Gangelhoff also alleges he and Payer were conduits for a $3,000 payment from Clem Haskins for her work with player Antoine Broxsie in the spring of 1998. Elayne Donahue alleges Newby knew Gangelhoff was working with players in violation of university rules. Grad student Alexandra Goulding says Newby watched her write a paper for player Courtney James.

Where he stands: He is possibly the central figure in the investigation. Newby could have direct knowledge of the involvement of Haskins and other athletic department officials. Thus far, Newby has declined comment. He has a history of defending himself through the judicial system, including filing a suit against the university.

What’s at stake: His job. And perhaps the fate of other top department officials.

THE PLAYERS

Antoine Broxsie, above, Kevin Clark, Miles Tarver, Jason Stanford and 16 former players.

Concern: Jan Gangelhoff provided the Pioneer Press with 225 examples of course work she said she did for the players from 1993-98. Her sister, Jeanne Payer, also said she did work for some of the players.

Where they stand: Russ Archambault, Courtney James, Kevin Loge and Darrell Whaley confirmed the allegations. Jermaine Stanford and Ryan Wolf denied the allegations. Clark, Broxsie, Tarver, Jason Stanford, Micah Watkins, Voshon Lenard, Hosea Crittenden and Jayson Walton refused comment. Bobby Jackson said Gangelhoff served primarily as a typist, a possible NCAA violation. Four others could not be reached for comment.

What’s at stake: Broxsie stands to lose the most if the allegations prove true. He has two years of eligibility remaining and could have his credits invalidated and be kicked out of school.

THE PROGRAM

The University of Minnesota men’s basketball program.

Concern: The program stands accused of perhaps one of the greatest cases of academic fraud in Big Ten, if not NCAA history.

Where it stands: The university has hired an outside law firm to investigate the allegations and determine what, if any, penalties are in order.

What’s at stake:

The basketball program was reportedly the target of a major infractions case in 1991 and was put on probation in 1988 for violations, most of which occurred in men’s basketball. But under Clem Haskins the Gophers have emerged as one of the Big Ten’s most consistent programs, culminating with a Final Four appearance in the 1996-97 season. All that has been gained could now be lost. Possible penalties include probation for the program, a loss of scholarships and the forfeiture of earlier victories.

 

CHAIN OF EVENTS

A timeline of the investigation into allegations of academic fraud by its men’s basketball players.

Feb. 27: Jan Gangelhoff turns over to a Pioneer Press reporter almost 300 documents from her tenure as an office manager in the academic counseling unit and as a tutor. The documents, which she says contain course work she did for players, are downloaded from her computer and discs at a Danbury, Wis., cafe.

March 1: Russ Archambault becomes the first former player to confirm that Gangelhoff did course work for him.

March 6: After an analysis of the documents revealed at least 225 examples of purported course work that Gangelhoff said she did for players, the Pioneer Press finds evidence of duplication among papers allegedly turned in by different players, including identical typographical errors.

March 8: The Pioneer Press asks the university’s sports information office to set up a meeting with Vice President for athletics and student development McKinley Boston, athletics Director Mark Dienhart, basketball coach Clem Haskins, basketball academic counselor Alonzo Newby and NCAA compliance director Chris Schoemann. Reporters also attempt to contact all former players and coaches implicated by Gangelhoff. That evening, Newby calls Gangelhoff, demanding an explanation for her decision to go public, and telling her Haskins has learned of the story and is livid.

March 9: The team’s traveling party leaves for Seattle, the site of its NCAA tournament game, without speaking to the Pioneer Press. The allegations are detailed to university President Mark Yudof, who says the school has called in legal counsel. By the end of the night, Haskins and Boston speak to the Pioneer Press.

March 10: Gangelhoff’s allegations are published, including claims that Haskins paid her $3,000 to tutor in spring 1998. Gov. Jesse Ventura and hundreds of angry callers accuse the paper of timing the publication to maximize publicity and hurt the team’s NCAA chances.

March 11: After meeting with the four current players implicated by Gangelhoff, the university suspends them from the game as Boston acknowledges "prima facie evidence’’ of NCAA violations. The Gophers lose to Gonzaga.

March 12: The Pioneer Press reports former academic counselor Rick Marsden stated in an affidavit as part of his sexual harassment lawsuit against the school that in 1986 a basketball coach asked him to do course work for players. He said the coach was Haskins.

March 14: The Pioneer Press reports that six years ago a faculty committee urged the school to crack down on athletic department officials’ intrusion into academic counseling and tutoring for athletes. The report was ignored.

March 19: Gangelhoff says the $3,000 came from Haskins through an intermediary, later identified as Newby.

March 19: The university hires Bond, Schoeneck & King of Overland, Kan., and a Minneapolis law firm to handle the investigation, which will take at least six months.

March 21: The Pioneer Press reports that Haskins once signed a glowing letter of recommendation for Gangelhoff, praising her ability to perform "above what is required of her.’’

March 22: Haskins issues a denial described by his attorney as "all-inclusive.’’

March 23: Gangelhoff says Haskins knew she was doing course work for players and advised her about how to make it appear authentic.

March 24: The Pioneer Press reports a graduate student’s allegation that she wrote a class paper in 1995 for player Courtney James during her first tutoring session. She said when she told Newby and Haskins that she would not do it again, Newby said she would not be offered a contract to continue tutoring.

 

 

VOICES

A sampling of statements published since March 10, when allegations of academic fraud in the men’s basketball program at the University of Minnesota first appeared.

March 10

"These are serious allegations. We’ve called in legal counsel to look into this promptly. But they are just allegations at this point.’’

Mark Yudof, university president, upon learning of the allegations of academic fraud.

"The coaches knew. Everybody (in the basketball program) knew. We used to make jokes about it.’’

Russ Archambault, on why he believes coaches knew that Jan Gangelhoff was doing course work for players.

March 11

"I think it’s despicable in the fact that they would release a story like this that apparently has been going on for, what, a year?’’

Gov. Jesse Ventura, blasting the Pioneer Press for publishing the story after a 3è-month investigation the day before the Gophers’ NCAA tournament game.

March 12

"This all started because I thought maybe I could teach these kids something.’’

Gangelhoff, explaining how she says she got started doing course work for players.

"It was him. He asked me to write a paper for (a player) and I told him I absolutely would not. He swore at me. I swore at him and then I told my boss.’’

Rick Marsden, former basketball academic counselor, on an exchange he said he had with Coach Clem Haskins in 1986.

March 13

"Our mission here is to have zero tolerance of cheating.’’

Yudof, speaking to legislators at the Capitol.

March 20

"Jan called and asked if it was OK if Alonzo brought her money over. (Newby) called and came over. He came to the front door, gave me the envelope and said something like: ÔThis is Jan’s.’ ‘‘

Jeanne Payer, Gangelhoff’s sister, on her allegation that she was the go-between in a $3,000 payment that went from Haskins to Newby, the academic counselor for basketball, to her sister.

March 21

"From my personal experience and reports from others who have known her longer, she has a unique ability to help young people realize their potential.’’

Haskins, who signed a letter of recommendation FOR GANGELHOFF with the above paragraph.

March 22

"I deny the allegations of former player Russ Archambault. I again deny the allegations of Jan Gangelhoff. They are not true.’’

Haskins, after Archambault alleged in the Star Tribune of Minneapolis that he had received money from Haskins.

"What I did was against regulations and I did it in front of Alonzo Newby.’’

Alexandra Goulding, grad student, on writing a paper for former player Courtney James during her first tutoring session. She was not asked to tutor again.

March 23

"On a couple of occasions he said, ‘Just remember, Jan, you can’t be too good. The papers can’t be too good.’" Gangelhoff, alleging that Haskins told her how to write papers so they would look authentic.

TIMELINE

A timeline of the university's investigation into allegations of academic fraud by its men's basketball players.

  • Feb. 27: Jan Gangelhoff turns over to the Pioneer Press almost 300 documents from her tenure as an office manager in the academic counseling unit and as a tutor. The documents, which she says contain course work she did for players, are downloaded from her computer and discs at a Danbury, Wis., cafe.

  • March 1: Russ Archambault becomes the first former player to confirm that Gangelhoff did course work for him. He also alleges he received cash payments from Haskins as a player, but his allegations are inconsistent and the Pioneer Press chooses not to publish them.

  • March 6: After an analysis of the documents revealed at least 225 examples of purported course work that Gangelhoff said she did for players, the Pioneer Press finds evidence of duplication among papers allegedly turned in by different players, including identical typographical errors.

  • March 11: After being contacted by Pioneer Press reporters, school officials meet with the four current players implicated by Gangelhoff. The university suspends them from the game as Boston acknowledges "prima facie evidence'' of NCAA violations. The Gophers lose to Gonzaga University, 75-63.

  • March 12: The Pioneer Press reports that former basketball academic counselor Rick Marsden stated in an affidavit as part of his sexual harassment lawsuit against the school that in 1986 a basketball coach asked him to do course work for players. He said the coach was Haskins.

  • March 14: The Pioneer Press reports that six years ago a faculty committee urged the school to crack down on athletic department officials' intrusion into academic counseling and tutoring for athletes. The report was ignored.

  • March 19: Gangelhoff says the $3,000 came from Haskins through an intermediary, later identified as Newby. Also, the university hires Bond, Schoeneck & King of Overland Park, Kan., and a Minneapolis law firm to handle the investigation, which will take at least six months.

  • March 21: The Star Tribune of Minneapolis publishes Archambault's allegation that he received cash from Haskins "$200 to $300 at a time'' while a member of the team. The Pioneer Press reports that Haskins once wrote a glowing letter of recommendation for Gangelhoff, praising her ability to perform "above what is required of her.''

  • March 22: Haskins issues a denial described by his attorney as "all-inclusive.''

  • March 23: Gangelhoff said Haskins knew she was doing course work for players and advised her about how to make it appear authentic.

  • March 24: The Pioneer Press reports a graduate student's allegation that she wrote a class paper in 1995 for player Courtney James during her first tutoring session. She said she told Haskins and Newby that she would not do it again. The next day, she said Newby told her she would not be offered a contract to continue working.

  • April 1: Gangelhoff supplies the Pioneer Press with 54 additional examples of alleged course work she said she did for eight of the players implicated earlier.

  • April 4: The Pioneer Press reports Newby requested and was granted disability leave from his job as the team's academic counselor.

  • April 8: A computer analysis by the Pioneer Press reveals that the Gophers had the worst basketball graduation rate in the Big Ten, 23 percent, for players recruited between 1983-91.

  • April 9: Gangelhoff meets with investigators and clears one player, Jermaine Stanford, of cheating, but not of possible NCAA violations. She brings more than 350 examples of course work she said she did, having found 90 more earlier in the week.

  • April 14: A 20-page report by former academic counseling director Elayne Donahue obtained by the Pioneer Press alleges that the program intervened with faculty members on behalf of several Gophers players, some of whom needed help to remain eligible.

  • April 16: The Pioneer Press reports Haskins' contract allows for a broad interpretation of his responsibility and would make it difficult for him to be fired without receiving a substantial payment.

  • April 28: The Pioneer Press reports that the university failed to report to the NCAA a cheating incident involving former player Kevin Loge, even though Loge and Gangelhoff said they told Chris Schoemann, the university's director of NCAA compliance, about the incident.

  • An extensive analysis of documents obtained by the Pioneer Press finds that star former player Bobby Jackson was awarded credits for a course earlier than school rules allow, was never enrolled in basic courses he needed to graduate, such as math and a foreign language, and once received an "A'' in a directed study course in which the only assignment was to type the word "basketball'' into a database and list the articles that appeared. The paper also reports that a member of the Golden Dunkers has been charged with running a bookmaking operation.

  • May 25: Minneapolis black leaders say they believe media coverage of the scandal is racially biased and cite a Pioneer Press editorial cartoon titled "The Plantation'' as an example of prejudice. Editors of both newspapers deny the charge.

  • May 27: Newby's lawyer, Ron Rosenbaum, announces his client will not talk to investigators looking into the allegations of academic fraud.

  • June 10: The Pioneer Press reports not only that a week earlier the U began negotiations with Haskins' lawyer, ostensibly to seek a settlement that would remove him as coach, but also that the Board of Regents would meet that morning to discuss terms of a potential buy-out.

  • June 11: The Pioneer Press reports that Haskins, using a personal check, paid for Gangelhoff to go to Hawaii, where the team was playing in a tournament.

  • June 15: Rosenbaum says Newby may be willing to talk to investigators in return for money or a severance package.

  • June 25: Haskins leaves the university, agreeing to a $1.5 million parting of the ways. In a series of tough and revealing comments, University of Minnesota President Mark Yudof left no doubt about why Haskins' 13-year tenure as Gopher men's basketball coach had come to an abrupt end: Convincing evidence exists of "numerous, numerous, maybe even massive incidents of academic misconduct'' in the men's basketball program, the president says.

  • July 25: Dan Monson, formerly of Gonzaga University in Washington, is hired to a seven-year, nearly $500,000-per-year contract as the Gophers top men's basketball coach.

  • Oct. 26: University of Minnesota President Mark Yudof announces a one-year ban on postseason play and puts the team on probation for an undetermined amount of time. He also says to expect more sanctions.

  • Oct. 27: The Pioneer Press reports that all 11 Gophers head coaches delivered a letter to Yudof in support of Dienhart and other department officials, but not Boston.

  • Oct. 29: Former academic counselor Alonzo Newby, in his first public statement, admits he did not "play by the rules'' and "allowed himself to give in to an administration's desire to win at any cost.''

  • Nov. 5: A special student and faculty subcommittee recommends eliminating the position of vice president of student affairs and athletics, the job currently held by Boston. The committee also recommends that academic counseling and student services report to a provost who reports directly to Yudof and that the athletic director report to a special assistant to the president.

  • Nov. 11: Athletic director Mark Dienhart faults Haskins publicly for the first time, telling the full student and faculty Senate committee that Haskins was a "power coach'' who only "answered to God.'' Also, the committee recommends the earlier subcommittee recommendations calling for major changes in the administration of the athletic department, to further separate it from academics.

  • Nov. 16: State Sen. Cal Larson, R-Fergus Falls, calls for Boston and Dienhart to step down. He also sends a letter to the NCAA, in which he calls Yudof's actions so far "inadequate and misguided.''

  • Nov. 19: The university releases a 1,000-page report and 1,500 pages of supporting documents from the university's investigation. Yudof also announces his "action plan'' for dealing with the crisis.

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