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Oklahoma State basketball: What Lamont Evans' punishment at South Carolina could mean for Cowboys

Jacob Unruh
Lamont Evans, suspended Oklahoma State assistant basketball coach, gets into a car after leaving the federal courthouse in Oklahoma City, Wednesday, Sept. 27, 2017. Evans is one of four college coaches charged in a federal investigation focused on fraud and corruption in college basketball. Photo by Nate Billings, The Oklahoman

Former Oklahoma State assistant coach Lamont Evans received another punishment from the NCAA for his scheme to accept bribes to influence student-athletes.

This time it was for his part in the scheme at South Carolina before he was hired by the Cowboys.

Evans was dealt a second 10-year show cause on Thursday by the Division I Committee on Infractions

But South Carolina’s men’s basketball program did not receive near the same level of punishment as the Cowboys. 

There was no postseason ban or loss of scholarships.

Instead, South Carolina received two years of probation and the self-imposed penalties of a $5,000 fine, reduction in official visits to 25 for a rolling two-year period, a prohibition of unofficial visits in men’s basketball for four weeks this fall and/or next the fall, a ban on telephone recruiting over a six-week period and reduction of recruiting person days by 17.

OSU instead was banned for one postseason and lost three scholarships over three years for Evans’ scheme. Its fine, which was self-imposed, was $10,000 plus 1% of the program’s budget.

Over the summer, OSU officials expressed outrage at the NCAA’s punishment, the first dealt in the wide-ranging investigation stemmed by the FBI. The Cowboys have appealed and remain eligible for the postseason as long as the appeal is pending or if they win the decision.

The punishments since could aid OSU's appeal.

Alabama and South Carolina both received punishments for the same scheme without a postseason ban or loss of scholarships. For the Gamecocks, their infractions were committed by Evans, but in a shorter period of time.

The NCAA said beginning in August 2015 Evans accepted between $3,000 and $5,800 in bribes from someone associated with a professional sports agent to arrange meetings with a South Carolina athlete and his family to influence them to retain the agent’s services. The NCAA said Evans did not actually arrange the meetings and the athlete did not sign with the agent.

But the agent’s associate arranged for two financial advisers to take over the bribe payments when Evans left for OSU in 2016. One of those advisers was a cooperating witness for the federal government.

With the Cowboys, Evans accepted between $18,150 and $22,000 in bribes in his one season before he was arrested and fired.

In 2019, Evans pleaded guilty to accepting $22,000 in bribes and was sentenced to three months in prison.