Former Penn men's basketball coach Jerome Allen was removed from the Penn Athletics Hall of Fame on Tuesday, just one day after he was sentenced for his role in a year-long admissions bribery scandal. Allen's sentence includes four years of probation, 600 hours of community service, and a fine of $202,000 along with an $18,000 forfeiture to the federal government.
“The University of Pennsylvania considers induction into the Penn Athletics Hall of Fame as the highest individual honor for a student-athlete or coach, and criteria for induction encompasses both athletic achievements and character. As a result of his federal conviction, Jerome Allen has been removed from the Penn Athletics Hall of Fame," Senior Associate Athletic Director of Governance and Administration Kevin Bonner wrote in a statement.
Allen's involvement in the scandal sparked debate over whether or not the school should expel the former standout from the illustrious ranks of the Red and Blue's best. His successful career on the court included two Ivy League Player of the Year awards and three Ivy League titles. Allen is also the latest Penn player to be drafted in the NBA.
However, Penn Athletics has still not released any information about its investigation of any potential NCAA, Ivy League or federal rules violations despite repeated requests for comment.
The school launched its own investigation after news of the scandal broke just under a year ago, hiring The Compliance Group's Chuck Smrt to look into the matter. On Oct. 8, Penn released a statement to the Philadelphia Inquirer and Daily News announcing that the "independent review" had reached its final stages, but that the University would not comment further on the situation until the "process is finalized".
In February, Athletics Director M. Grace Calhoun told the DP that the findings of the investigation would become public after Allen's trial.
“Penn thoroughly reviewed everything surrounding the situation, and as soon as we're at liberty to proceed forward, after that part of the trial at least, we will,” she said.
Penn Athletics has not commented on any part of the investigation, including its scope, timeline, or findings with the exception of brief statements echoing that no details could be offered until after the trial was over.
In March, former assistant coach Ira Bowman was also implicated in the scandal, potentially affecting the timeline of an investigation.
At that time, Bonner wrote that the school was "cooperating fully with the government and the NCAA so that the matter is appropriately redressed," but declined to provide any additional information.
The NCAA and the Ivy League have yet to comment on the scandal, but it is possible that either or both will announce a separate investigation or recommend sanctions against Penn Athletics or Penn men's basketball with the conclusion of Penn's investigation.
Experts say the case is without precedent but any potential outcomes would depend on the findings of the investigation.
“It really comes down to whether the school knew or should have known,” Miami-based collegiate sports lawyer Jason A. Setchen said. “If they didn’t know and couldn’t have known and [Allen] really did a serious job of trying to conceal it, then the school’s culpability obviously goes down dramatically to the point where they might not even have an NCAA violation."