Southern Methodist, on NCAA football probation for three years, has fired P.J. (Bootsie) Larsen, 42, an assistant football coach, saying only that he violated university policies.

Athletic Director Bob Hitch wouldn't elaborate, and the school's sports information director, Larry White, said, "If you're asking, is he being fired at the request of the NCAA, no, he is not."

Larsen couldn't be reached for comment. His telephone has been disconnected.

On Aug. 16, the NCAA penalized SMU for recruiting violations. SMU can't be on live TV this year and can't play in bowl games the next two seasons. There'll be no scholarships for incoming freshmen in 1986 and only 15 scholarships in 1987.

SMU put an unidentified assistant on probation for a year, effective May 1, because of money allegedly paid to a recruit, Sean Stopperich.

SMU also warned an unnamed athletic department employe that he might be in more trouble if he were implicated further.

There was no indication, though, that Larsen was that assistant.

Larsen, 42, who coached SMU's linebackers, was tight end coach at Southern Mississippi for three years before coming to SMU with head Coach Bobby Collins in 1982. He also had been an assistant at Richman and North Alabama.