Hart Releases Statement in Support of Barnes

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    Dave Hart-1In light of a report from the Chronicle of Higher Education on Wednesday morning that stated that Texas, and, ultimately former coach Rick Barnes, who is now in the same position at Tennessee, could come under investigation in the near future for “several” academic incidents that allegedly took place in recent years, Tennessee AD Dave Hart released a statement on Tuesday afternoon of support for Barnes.

    Hart said, via a statement:

    “Obviously we can’t talk about what happened in the past at another university, however as stated clearly by the University of Texas, ‘The university has no information that suggests former men’s basketball coach Rick Barnes knew of or was involved in any academic improprieties.’

    “Coach Barnes has a sterling reputation as a person of very high ethical standards at every institution he has represented and we are excited to have him lead our men’s basketball program.”

    This comes a few hours after Texas released the following statement:

    “Academic integrity is at the core of the University of Texas. Our student-athletes’ academic progress rates are among the best in the nation. And we continually seek to foster an ethical culture that reduces the risk of wrongdoing, manages our internal controls, and responds to inappropriate conduct.

    “The university takes any suggestion of wrongdoing extremely seriously. We are always looking to identify problems that may exist and ways we can do better. Working with external NCAA bylaw and academic compliance experts Gene Marsh and Geoff Silver, UT is investigating allegations raised by The Chronicle of Higher Education and has contacted the NCAA about them. We determined that the university had no knowledge of two former student-athletes allegedly receiving improper help with high school coursework before they enrolled. We now are reviewing three other cases purported to have occurred over a nine-year period since 2006 to determine if any university or NCAA rules were violated and if any action is needed. The university has no information that suggests Rick Barnes knew of or was involved in any academic improprieties. President Gregory L. Fenves is actively working with his leadership teams in both Student Affairs and Athletics to pursue the highest levels of integrity for all UT students.”