2019-02-07 by W.M.
Arizona Assistant Mark Phelps on Administrative Leave Amid NCAA Investigation | Bleacher Report
Rick Scuteri/Associated Press
Arizona Wildcats assistant coach Mark Phelps has been placed on administrative leave.
Alabama attorney Donald Maurice Jackson announced the news on Facebook on Wednesday:
“University of Arizona Assistant Men’s Basketball Coach Mark Phelps was placed on administrative leave on February 5, 2019 based upon an unresolved NCAA matter. Coach Phelps has performed his duties in strict compliance with NCAA and University policies. In correspondence dated January 22, 2019, Counsel for Coach Phelps was advised of the following by the NCAA Director of Enforcement: ‘At this point, the enforcement staff has made no determinations regarding potential violations involving Coach Phelps as we are still in the process of collecting information and conducting interviews.’ Although Coach Phelps is disappointed with the decision to place him on leave, he will continue to fully cooperate with both University investigators and NCAA staff. He is confident that he will be fully exonerated and allowed to resume his coaching career.”
Stadium’s Jeff Goodman reported that the decision is the result of “an online course involving a recruit who never wound up attending Arizona.”
Phelps is in his fourth season in Tucson after joining Sean Miller’s coaching staff in 2015. He has previously spent time as an assistant at NC State, Arizona State, Missouri and Marquette.
He also went 77-86 as the head coach at Drake from 2008 to 2013, making two appearances in the CollegeInsider.com Postseason Tournament.
Arizona head coach Sean Miller’s future with the program has come into question, as the Wildcats are one of the teams being investigated by the NCAA, according to Yahoo Sports’ Pat Forde, Pete Thamel and Dan Wetzel. WildcatAuthority.com’s Jason Scheer writes that Phelps’ suspension is not related to the FBI investigation.
Miller and Phelps’ relationship dates back to their days on the NC State coaching staff, where they were together from 1996 to 2001.