The primary violation was Pflugrad allowing Montana’s boosters to provide impermissible benefits to players including bail money and free legal representation for two players undergoing criminal cases.
The penalties handed down by the NCAA on Montana include:
- Three-year probation
- Loss of four scholarships over the following three seasons
- Vacating five wins (two playoff victories)
According to the NCAA, the vacated wins are due to the aforementioned student-athletes participating while the should have been ineligible. Pflugrad has come out and defended the Montana program.
“I understand some of those scholarship losses only in the fact the NCAA has been in here 18 months and they’ve allocated a lot of resources and personnel and time to look at it,” O’Day told the Missoulian. “They absolutely had to come away with something. It’s no different than the IRS when they go in and they are red-flagged on something. They’ve got to come away with something.”
Pflugrad was eventually fired by the University of Montana. He is now an assistant coach with Weber State.
“There was an overall climate and publicity that assisted in creating a certain atmosphere in which the administration overreacted,” Pflugrad said. “That resulted in the termination of the athletic director and myself as head football coach.”
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