by Ryne Nelson

Rip Hamilton’s former agent Josh Nochimson is at the center of violations centering around UConn’s recruitment of “high-risk” recruit Nate Miles.

From Adrian Wojnarowski and Dan Wetzel of Yahoo!!!!:

The University of Connecticut violated NCAA rules in the recruitment of former guard Nate Miles, a six-month investigation by Yahoo! Sports has found.

Miles was provided with lodging, transportation, restaurant meals and representation by Josh Nochimson – a professional sports agent and former UConn student manager – between 2006 and 2008, according to multiple sources. As a representative of UConn’s athletic interests, Nochimson was prohibited by NCAA rules from having contact with Miles and from providing him with anything of value.

[...]

From that first meeting until Miles was expelled from the university in October 2008 for violating a restraining order brought by a female student, Nochimson played an integral role in the player’s life. The agent guided Miles, who had social and academic difficulties, through a jagged journey to Connecticut.

There have been a couple pervading immediate reactions to this report: 1) The team should never have been involved with an agent, and 2) UConn should never have gone after after a “high-risk” player like Miles. The truth is every big recruit has barnacles like Nochimson attached to him, and the process is already well-ingrained into the college landscape. In addition, Caron Butler was a “high-risk” prospect who obviously was the right choice to recruit.

Wojnarowski and Wetzel worked on the report since last Fall, and a timed release of this information seems to be aimed for maximum impact — UConn plays its Sweet 16 match against Purdue tomorrow. The story, however, which cites information obtained from the Freedom of Information Act, has been meticulously researched and contains some serious violations.

While the allegations are no where near as numerous and extreme as those charged against Indiana’s former head coach Kelvin Sampson — who was forced to resign after his controversial recruitment of many players, including current Clipper rookie Eric Gordon — this report could get coach Jim Calhoun fired. The report also alleges that former assistant coach Tom Moore exceeded limits on phone calls and text messages to Miles and involved Nochimson in Miles’ recruitment. Moore was UConn’s top recruiter for a number of years.

As the kid never played a second for UConn, it will be interesting to see how seriously the NCAA takes this report.