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U-Md. Officials Rebut Williams on Recruits
The recruitment of Evans in the spring garnered attention because the Richmond native had a long record of criminal offenses, including misdemeanor convictions for marijuana possession and assault and battery. But Worthington's review of Evans revealed an additional criminal charge that Evans had not disclosed to the coaching staff.
"At the time, Gary was very upset because Tyree had not disclosed all those incidents to him," Worthington said. "Gary decided, because Tyree had not disclosed all the criminal incidents to him, that he no longer wanted to offer him aid."
As the admissions department was reviewing Evans's case, Worthington said Williams called the Maryland Office of Student Conduct, which typically reviews cases of students with criminal backgrounds along with the admissions department, to say he was no longer interested in Evans.
On May 19, Williams told John Zacker, the director of the Office of Student Conduct, that he did not want Evans on the team because he had not disclosed all of the criminal charges, according to the chronology of events produced by the athletic department and the university's legal office.
Zacker confirmed in a telephone interview that Williams called him to say that there was more to Evans's criminal record than what had previously been disclosed.
In late May, five weeks after Evans signed with Maryland, the shooting guard, then 23, requested and was granted a release from his letter-of-intent, the school announced.
Williams said the reason why Evans did not wind up at Maryland was because "he would have had to go through so much to just be a student on campus after what had been said in the papers."
Williams's recent comments set off the latest squabble between Williams and athletic department officials.
Two sources within the athletic department, speaking on condition of anonymity because of the sensitive nature of the situation, said communication between Williams and AD Debbie Yow has been poor for years.
When asked if there is a communication issue, Williams said: "Take a look. I coach here. I've got to live here. That's the way it is. I've coached here for 20 years, long before anyone else was here. Nobody was here 20 years ago."