Suspended Wade used ASU employee's car

Updated: October 1, 2004, 9:20 AM ET
Associated Press

TEMPE, Ariz. -- Arizona State is investigating the reported use of a school employee's car by a football player and the possible misappropriation of scholarship money, a newspaper reported Friday.

The Arizona Republic said sophomore tailback Loren Wade turned himself in after using the automobile of a compliance assistant in the ASU athletic department's compliance and recruitment department.

Wade, the leading rusher this season for the 4-0 Sun Devils (No. 25 ESPN/USA Today, No. 21 AP), was suspended indefinitely from the squad before last Saturday night's game against Oregon State by coach Dirk Koetter for violating undisclosed team rules.

On Tuesday, ASU Athletic Director Gene Smith announced that the an internal investigation was being conducted to determine whether there were any NCAA infractions.

ASU officials won't comment on the ongoing investigation, but the Republic said the school already has discovered that some student-athletes received extra money in their scholarship checks.

The compliance assistant -- a 33-year-old woman who worked for ASU for six years and has a master's degree from the university -- was fired Thursday, according to the Republic.

The woman handled much of the paperwork in the compliance department and was the liaison between student-athletes and ASU's financial aid office, the newspaper said.

ASU has hired an outside investigator for its probe and will report the findings to the Pacific-10 Conference, which is permitted by the NCAA to police its member schools.

A four-member Pac-10 Compliance and Enforcement Committee determines whether violations occurred and recommends penalties.

Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press