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UTEP football, softball programs placed on 1-year probation for NCAA rules violations

A UTEP football and helmet sits on the field at the Sun Bowl stadium.
Ruben Ramirez/UTEP Athletics
A UTEP football and helmet sits on the field at the Sun Bowl stadium.

EL PASO, Texas – The NCAA on Tuesday said it was placing UTEP's football and softball programs on one-year probation and fining the university $5,000 for rules violations.

The violations cited by the NCAA involved exceeding allotted practice time and having too many coaches involved with practices. UTEP officials acknowledged the violations and said they would accept the punishments, which were part of a negotiated settlement with the NCAA.

“I am committed and will ensure that we do a better job of following all NCAA rules," said UTEP head football coach Dana Dimel in a statement released by the university. "It is my responsibility to create an atmosphere of compliance on my staff and within our football program.  I acknowledge that I need to do a better job moving forward, and accept the NCAA’s penalties for this violation.”

Dimel is also facing an individual penalty that includes a four-day suspension from all coaching activities and a 10-day suspension from off-campus recruiting during the 2020-21 football contact period.

The softball coach when the violations occurred, Tobin Echo-Hawk, was fired by UTEP in 2019 after she failed to have a winning season during the six years she headed the program.

Below is the document outlining the negotiated settlement between UTEP and the NCAA over the rules violations.

Education / El Paso / News / Top Stories / UTEP

Jim Parker

Jim Parker is the Director of Digital Content for ABC-7.


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