NCAA ruling vacates 2 years of Iowa volleyball wins after former coach secretly paid player $2,000

Chad Leistikow
Hawk Central

The Iowa volleyball program must vacate all 33 wins from its 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons and was placed on one year of probation as part of a Wednesday-released ruling from the NCAA surrounding the messy circumstances that led to the firing of former coach Bond Shymansky.

The University of Iowa was also fined $5,000, according to the report.

The ruling details the circumstances in which Shymansky paid $2,000 in cash to an incoming transfer so that she could focus on academics and not have to worry about getting a job.

Bond Shymansky, center, paid $2,000 of his personal funds to an incoming transfer, an NCAA report reveals.

According to the report, Shymansky’s “personal bank records show he withdrew $1,500 (on June 8, 2017). That same day, the head coach exchanged texts with the prospect asking where she was and stating he had something to give her. The head coach drove to the prospect's apartment and, when she came outside, he provided her with an envelope containing $1,500. On a separate occasion, the prospect asked the head coach for money and they met in his office, where he gave her an envelope containing $500 in cash, the report states.

“The head coach reported that he originally intended the money to be an advance for wages the prospect would earn working at his volleyball camp later that summer. However, all parties agree that the prospect was also paid for working the volleyball camp and the advance was not paid back.”

The $2,000 exchange was kept secret until the player told an associate athletic director about it May 1, 2019, after which point the report states that the potential NCAA violation was promptly investigated. The major violation was confirmed and then self-reported to the NCAA on June 13, 2019.

Six days later, Shymansky’s firing and the elevation of Vicki Brown as interim head coach were announced. Brown has since become the permanent head coach.

In a statement Wednesday, Iowa athletics director Gary Barta praised his top deputy, Barbara Burke, and staff members for acting quickly once they learned of the Level II major NCAA violation.

“Their immediate and devoted attention and cooperation from the first day we were notified of possible infractions played a vital role in the prompt and accepted resolution,” Barta said. “While we are disappointed in the isolated events, we appreciate the quick action of the NCAA in reaching this resolution. We accept these findings and will move forward."

Iowa also was hit with minor recruiting reductions as part of the ruling, and Shymansky was given a two-year "show-cause" order that prohibits him coaching through May 19, 2022.