Missouri State volleyball hit with string of NCAA penalties over violations


Missouri State women’s volleyball has been banned from postseason play for a year and docked scholarships as the NCAA handed down penalties to the program on Thursday.

Additionally, the team will be on probation for three years and have to pay a fine of $5,000 plus one percent of the program’s budget.

Numerous violations over a three year period were committed under longtime coach Melissa Stokes. Stokes resigned in 2019 amid an independent investigation done by the school that uncovered many of the violations.

According to the NCAA, the former volleyball coach was “personally involved in many of these violations and permitted others, thereby violating head coach responsibility rules.”

“As a result, Missouri State failed to monitor its women’s volleyball program,” the NCAA said in a release.

Included are the allowance of more than $16,000 in impermissible recruiting inducements and benefits. Free or reduced-cost housing were also given to volunteer coaches, causing the team to exceed the permissible number of coaches. Free tutoring and other academic assistance were also provided to help two prospects meet initial admission and eligibility requirements.

The NCAA ruled that all of the violations are considered Level I under NCAA rules.