Former University at Buffalo men's basketball coach Tim Cohane has returned to coaching college basketball.
Cohane, who resigned from his post at UB in December 1999, was hired Sept. 23 as the associate head coach at William & Mary in Williamsburg, Va. Cohane and William & Mary coach Rick Boyages were assistants under Jim O'Brien at Boston College during the mid-1990s.
"I'm happy to be working for William & Mary, a school that has the highest academic standards and integrity," Cohane said Monday. "The basketball program I was involved with at Buffalo was also of the highest academic standards and integrity. That's all I really have to say."
Cohane's employment comes almost a year to the day when the NCAA denied UB's appeal of penalties for infractions that occurred under Cohane. The NCAA also ruled that Cohane was allowed to coach at member schools again.
The organization ruled that for four years, from 1995-96 to 1999-2000, Cohane and other members of the basketball staff observed informal scrimmages among student-athletes before the formal start of practice. In addition, tryouts were conducted for at least four prospective student-athletes who were on campus for official or unofficial visits, and impermissible scouting activities were allowed.
In March of last year, UB was placed on two years of probation and an NCAA penalty was imposed on Cohane for violations of several bylaws. The penalties on Cohane, which were initially to run through December 2002, barred NCAA schools from hiring him unless they could demonstrate "just cause" for the NCAA to allow it. Cohane later appealed the findings, arguing the penalty was excessive and inappropriate. The NCAA agreed and terminated the penalty, effective last October.
The controversy began when UB self-reported the violations to the Mid-American Conference in October 1999, and a Buffalo News investigation subsequently revealed the program held workouts for prospective student-athletes. Three days before the 1999-2000 season opener, Cohane dismissed the controversy surrounding his program as "a bunch of nonsense."
But Cohane resigned, just days before the Bulls hosted nationally ranked North Carolina in December 1999. The News reported a possible boycott by the players prior to the North Carolina game may have led to Cohane's resignation. He was replaced by Reggie Witherspoon, who is entering his third full season as coach.
Last year, UB appealed the penalty that requires a limit of eight official paid visits in men's basketball during the 2001-02 and 2002-03 school years. Buffalo petitioned to have the NCAA restore its official paid visits to 10. The maximum official visits allowed are 12. The NCAA's Infractions Appeals Committee upheld the penalty as appropriate to the circumstances.e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org