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Posted: Thursday May 14, 2009 12:30AM; Updated: Thursday May 14, 2009 12:30AM

Southern Indiana to forfeit season

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EVANSVILLE, Ind. (AP) -- Southern Indiana will forfeit its entire 2008-09 season after two players were declared ineligible and an internal investigation found five alleged NCAA violations by the men's basketball program.

The Division II school announced Wednesday it would submit its findings to the NCAA by the end of the week and will return more than $9,000 it received for participation in the NCAA tournament.

The Screaming Eagles finished with a 27-7 record and reached the second round of the NCAA tournament, losing 81-59 to eventual champion Findlay.

Assistant Sports Information Director Dan McDonnell said the school would not identify the players involved. The school said the players could be reinstated by the NCAA.

"This is the first time we've ever had to deal with something like this," McDonnell said Wednesday night.

The school said it would submit five alleged violations to the NCAA concerning "irregularities" in the men's basketball program. McDonnell said three alleged violations involved extra benefits involving transportation, including two for plane tickets for a player to get to and from campus; one involved homework provided for a player; and one involved improper communication with a prospective player who did make the team.

The players' ineligibility resulted from the transportation and academic irregularities, he said.

McDonnell said the violations all occurred this season and were discovered internally. He said the school believed the incidents were isolated.

McDonnell said there was nothing in the investigation to implicate former coach Rick Herdes but he had taken responsibility for the irregularities. Herdes resigned Friday after the investigation was revealed. Two assistant coaches were placed on administrative leave.

Herdes did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment Wednesday night.

"I know we'd just like to move on," McDonnell said.

He said the NCAA could accept Southern Indiana's self-imposed penalties or impose its own.

Copyright 2009 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

 
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