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2010-02-09

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'U' fills vacant post in athletic compliance office

By Kyle Swanson, Daily News Editor
Published February 8, 2010

The University recently hired Elizabeth Heinrich to join the Athletic Compliance Division of Michigan’s Athletic Department.

An official announcement of the hire has not yet been made, but Associate Athletic Director for Compliance Judy Van Horn confirmed the hire in an e-mail to The Michigan Daily yesterday. The hire is a routine replacement for a vacated position, not an expansion of the compliance office, Van Horn wrote.

Heinrich will begin her role as Assistant Athletic Director for Compliance later this week, replacing Matt Stolberg who left the Athletic Department in January. Stolberg left to accept a position at Penn State University as its Associate Athletic Director for Compliance.

“I am pleased to announce Elizabeth Heinrich as a new employee with the Athletic Department’s Compliance Services Office staff,” Van Horn wrote. “Elizabeth begins her tenure as Assistant Athletic Director for Compliance with the University of Michigan later this week.”

Heinrich comes to the University after working for the past four years as compliance coordinator for the University of Texas at Austin.

“She has been highly esteemed by the Texas coaches and staff,” Van Horn wrote in an e-mail. “In addition, Elizabeth is providing national leadership with the National Association for Athletics Compliance’s Reasonable Standards Committee.”

Prior to working at Texas, Heinrich worked for several years at a law firm in Boston and for one year at the NCAA, where she specialized in secondary infraction with the agents, gambling and amateurism unit.

Heinrich earned her undergraduate degree from Notre Dame and her law degree from Boston University, where she graduated summa cum laude, Van Horn wrote.

“The Athletic Department’s Compliance Services Office is dedicated to providing the highest levels of service to the University community,” Van Horn wrote.

The Athletic Department’s Compliance Services Office has come under scrutiny over the past several months after a Detroit Free Press article alleged that the Michigan football program violated NCAA rules regarding practice time and off-season workouts for its players.

A formal NCAA investigation into those allegations was launched on Oct. 23 when NCAA Vice President for Enforcement David Price sent a letter of inquiry to University President Mary Sue Coleman. At the time, Price wrote that he hoped to complete the investigation by Dec. 31 — though the date was a goal, not a deadline.

No word on the investigation’s findings has been released, though the University’s Board of Regents met in a closed-door session last week to receive an update the investigation, a source familiar with the situation told the Daily at the time.

In an e-mail yesterday, University spokeswoman Kelly Cunningham said there was still no word on the investigation’s findings.

At the same time, an internal investigation into the allegations has been underway since September. No updates or comment on the internal investigation have been issued since the probe was launched.