Another day and another potential college football scandal. This time it’s Texas A&M.
Former Aggie (now at Arizona) Santino Marchiol is spilling the beans on new A&M head coach Jimbo Fisher and how he operates his program. USA Today’s Dan Wolken has the story, and boy, is it interesting.
Marchiol red-shirted at A&M last season and was willing to give Fisher a chance this year, but decided to transfer after a handful of incidents took place between him and the coaching staff.
Because he was a red-shirt, Marchiol would have to sit out a year at Arizona and lose a year of eligibility. But there is a relatively new NCAA rule that could grant Marchiol instant eligibility. If he details wrongdoing at A&M, mitigating circumstances, then he could be instantly eligible.
So, Marchiol snitched and there were three major claims:
- Assistants (former UK assistant Bradley Dale Peveto was specifically named) handed Marchiol and his teammates cash. The money ($1,000 mentioned) was to be used on recruits during their unofficial visits. This is an obvious NCAA violation but Marchiol did state there was no evidence of the interactions with Peveto and he kept the leftover money.
- A&M coaches made players participate in “voluntary” workouts, practices and film sessions during the summer.
- A&M coaches used disrespectful language when talking to players and didn’t use caution with Marchiol’s injured ankle.
Marchiol describes being taken aback after the spring game when Peveto pulled him into a bathroom near the coaches’ offices and handed him $300.
“There were coaches having meetings in the other office, and he said, here, come in the bathroom real quick because he’d just asked me to host the recruit,” Marchiol said. “So I went in the bathroom and it was just me and him in there, and he’s like, ‘Take this, if you need any more just text me and make sure they have a good time.’ ”
I would suggest you read the entire story HERE, but this isn’t great news for A&M. The Cats will travel to College Station in October, so the more headaches the better.
But my big takeaway is the NCAA allowing players to snitch to become instantly eligible. That’s going to be a dangerous game for players who feel they didn’t get a fair shake. I’m guessing this will have college coaches pushing for immediate eligibility soon.
It’s worth noting that Marchiol didn’t go straight to the NCAA with this information, but instead detailed this info to Arizona’s compliance department, who told the NCAA.