Walker reprimanded, penalized by NCAA
INDIANAPOLIS — Illinois assistant coach Jamall Walker on Friday was publicly reprimanded by the NCAA and suspended for the next two NCAA tournament games he has the opportunity to coach in response to Walker confronting game officials following Illinois' NCAA tournament loss to Miami in March.
According the the NCAA release, Walker made inappropriate contact with a game official and verbally confronted the officials and a police officer at the Erwin Center in Austin, Texas, following the game on March 24.
The NCAA defines misconduct as any act of dishonesty, unsportsmanlike conduct, unprofessional behavior or breach of law occuring from the time the championship field is announced through the end of the championship that discredits the event or intercollegiate athletics.
“Coach Walker’s behavior violated the expectations that championship participants act in a manner that represents the highest standards of sportsmanship,” Ron Wellman, chair of the Division I Men’s Basketball Committee and athletic director at Wake Forest said. “The nature of his actions led us to issue the two-game postseason suspension.”
Illinois coach John Groce and Walker issued statements regarding the matter today.
"We have great respect for the game of basketball and the NCAA, and take pride in demonstrating good sportsmanship. After doing its due diligence, the NCAA has decided on this penalty. It is an unfortunate situation, but we accept the penalty and will move on," Groce said.
"I accept the NCAA's penalty regarding this matter and am ready to move forward," Walker said.