IHSAA receives allegation against Bettendorf about unfair recruiting practices

Local News

A complaint comes against a local school district over its approach to recruiting student athletes.

The Iowa High School Athletic Association told Local 4 News the Moline School District submitted an allegation against Bettendorf School District.

It is a Local 4 News exclusive.

The Association’s executive director said it was filed earlier this summer before he took over the regulating body in July.

Local 4 News first learned of the report from a viewer.

While IHSAA declined to provide details about this specific incident, they did say what qualifies.

It’s referred to as undue influence.

That’s when a school official makes an offer or provides privileges to a student athlete to encourage them to change schools.

“Undue influence is seen as some representative of a school providing some benefit, or something that would not be available to most students or all students,” said IHSAA Executive Director Tom Keating.

Tom Keating, the IHSAA executive director, which regulates Iowa high school sports for boys said they’re not in a position to investigate these allegations when they’re submitted to their office.

Instead, they forward the allegation and any information onto the school district’s administration facing the claim.

If undue influence can be determined and is severe enough, a school could be disqualified from participating in a state tournament, but Keating said IHSAA has not had a case reaching the level required to issue that suspension.

“I think that’s what we want, more than anything else,” said Keating. “Go through the process, find out what’s true, what’s a rumor, what’s unsubstantiated, what is flat out false because we find contrary information. We want them to be diligent and again, we trust them to do that.”

Local 4 News has submitted FOIA requests to the schools for information related to the allegations and for comment from the school district but have yet to hear back.

Local 4 News will continue to follow this story and provide updates as we learn more.

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