Ir­ish

Daily Local News (West Chester, PA) - - SPORTS -

“If do­ing the right thing means that you’ve got to put an as­ter­isk next to these games, that’s fine with me,” he said. “We still beat Ok­la­homa. We still beat Wake For­est, we still beat all those teams, so you can put an as­ter­isk next to it. If that makes you feel bet­ter, then that’s fine with me.”

He said he doesn’t be­lieve he has any cul­pa­bil­ity in the case and has no rea­son to be­lieve he won’t be back as Notre Dame’s coach next sea­son.

“I think you guys are con­fus­ing this state­ment with the win-loss record,” said Kelly, whose strug­gling team has a 4-7 record ahead of Satur­day’s game at

No. 12 USC. “A win-loss record is al­ways un­der scru­tiny at Notre Dame, and it should be. That’s part of it.”

The re­port doesn’t name the play­ers in­volved, but stems from an in­ves­ti­ga­tion that be­gan in Au­gust 2014 , when the univer­sity sus­pended de­fen­sive line­man Ishaq Wil­liams, re­ceiver DaVaris Daniels, line­backer Ken­dall Moore and corner­back KeiVarae Rus­sell, who weren’t al­lowed to play that sea­son. The school later benched safety Ei­lar Hardy, who was al­lowed to re­turn in mid­sea­son. Rus­sell re­turned and played for the Ir­ish last sea­son. Quar­ter­back Ev­erett Gol­son was sus­pended for the fall 2013 se­mes­ter for what he termed “poor judgment on a test.”

It was the first ma­jor NCAA vi­o­la­tion for Notre Dame since 1999, when the school was placed on pro­ba­tion

and had two schol­ar­ships taken away be­cause of the re­la­tion­ship be­tween Ir­ish play­ers and for­mer booster Kim­berly Dun­bar, who em­bez­zled more than $1.2 mil­lion from her em­ployer and then lav­ished the play­ers with gifts, trips and money. The NCAA also lists two other ma­jor in­frac­tions : in 1971 for the im­proper ad­min­is­tra­tion of fi­nan­cial aid and in 1954 for im­proper try­outs.

If the NCAA erases all 21 Notre Dame vic­to­ries, the Ir­ish would fall from the school with the sec­ond­most wins in NCAA history be­hind Michi­gan (935) to fifth place with 875. That would place them be­hind Texas (892), Ne­braska (889), Ohio State (885) and tied with Alabama (875) head­ing into the game against the Tro­jans, where they are 17-point un­der­dogs.

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