At least four members of the Notre Dame football team are suspected of having other students write papers and homework on their behalf and will be held out of practice and games as an investigation into the alleged misconduct continues, the university said in a statement.
The students, who were not identified by the school, allegedly submitted multiple papers and homework assignments that they did not author.
Other media reports identify the accused players as cornerback KeiVarae Russell, wide receiver DaVaris Daniels, defensive end Ishaq Williams and linebacker Kendall Moore.
The school became aware of the alleged misconduct on July 29, and has since notified the NCAA, the statement said.
“Integrity is at the heart of our mission and academic misconduct will not be tolerated at Notre Dame,” Rev. John Jenkins, the university’s president, said in a statement. “If the suspected improprieties are proven, we will use the experience to reinforce among our students the importance of honesty in all that they do. We are also examining ways of better conveying to students that they can avail themselves of legitimate academic assistance without resorting to cheating.”
If Notre Dame determines the misconduct would have made the student's ineligible to play in previous seasons, the school said it plans to vacate any wins from those contests.
The school did not say whether any other students were targets of the probe.
The Fighting Irish are scheduled to open their 2014 season at home against Rice on Aug. 30.
The team appeared in the Bowl Championship Series national championship game after an undefeated regular season in 2012, and went 9-4 last season before defeating Rutgers in the Pinstripe Bowl
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