Star running back Kenneth Davis and five other Texas Christian University football players have been suspended after they admitted taking illegal payments from a booster, TCU Coach Jim Wacker said yesterday in Fort Worth.
Wacker said the admissions came after Wacker used a team meeting to emphasize "the fact that we're building a great program and we're doing it with honesty and integrity."
The other five are defensive player Egypt Allen, linebacker Gearld Taylor, defensive end Gary Spann, strong safety Marvin Foster and defensive tackle Darron Turner.
The players "turned themselves in" after the team meeting Thursday, Wacker said.
Taylor is a junior and the others are seniors.
Wacker said he called the booster, who verified the payments, which are illegal under NCAA rules. He refused to identify the booster.
"At that point, we had no recourse but to call the league offices and the NCAA just like we said we would do. We turned ourselves in. It is a precedent in the NCAA. First the players turned themselves in to the coaches, then the coaches turned it in to the NCAA. I don't know any other way," he said.
The suspensions were effective immediately, so the six will miss today's game against Kansas State. Wacker said he would have to wait until TCU officials consult with Southwest Conference officials and the NCAA before deciding whether the suspensions would be permanent.
Wacker, SWC coach of the year after leading long-downtrodden TCU to an 8-4 record in 1984, said the six suspended players were recruited before he arrived from Southwest Texas State. He said he had been assured that no illegal payments were being made to athletes . . .
Former Memphis State basketball star Keith Lee may have broken NCAA rules when he performed summer public relations work for a Memphis auto dealer, NCAA officials say.
The kind of work Lee was doing "would at least raise the questions of possible violations. We would determine if a person was hired on the basis of fame," NCAA officers said.