Iowa tells NCAA that recruits met Kutcher, Moore

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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The University of Iowa told the NCAA the school allowed two basketball recruits to meet celebrity Hawkeye fans Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore. Such a meeting would be a recruiting violation.

The recruits met the married movie stars at an Iowa-Iowa State football game in September and two former Iowa basketball players the same day, The Des Moines Register reported Sunday based on records obtained under Iowa’s public records law.

NCAA rules prohibit recruits from contact with individuals considered to represent a university’s athletic interests.

Iowa athletic director Gary Barta said the school has responded to the NCAA regarding its football and men’s basketball team.

“We anticipate the NCAA will determine each to be unintentional secondary violations,” Barta said in a statement to The Associated Press on Sunday. “In each case, staff of the UI thoroughly investigated the activity and has already educated all involved on what was not done correctly or completely.”

The school’s report to the NCAA said the recruits met former Hawkeye basketball players Reggie Evans and Dean Oliver after a pickup game at Carver-Hawkeye Arena, then met Kutcher and Moore in a suite at Kinnick Stadium later that day.

The NCAA staff sent a letter to Iowa officials four days later after two prospective recruits were quoted in published reports saying they met with the former basketball players, along with Kutcher and Moore.

The documents provided to the Register don’t name the recruits. But reports in September and October quoted Josh Oglesby, a senior at Cedar Rapids Washington High School, and Marcus Paige, a junior at Linn-Mar High School, as saying they met Kutcher and Moore.

Oglesby announced his commitment to Iowa in late September after his official visit to the Iowa City campus. Paige has yet to announce his plans.

Mark Abbott, senior associate athletic director, said he did not believe the violations would preclude the Hawkeyes and new coach Fran McCaffery from continuing to recruit either player.

Kutcher is from Iowa and briefly attended the University of Iowa. He is an ardent supporter of the Hawkeyes, occasionally attending football and basketball games in Iowa City.

Documents said the presence of Kutcher and Moore at the football game drew a crowd, and the recruits met both actors and took pictures with them. The school’s internal report said the basketball staff didn’t attempt to stop to the situation because it was “uncomfortable.”

Iowa associate athletic director Fred Mims said in the school’s official response to the NCAA that the violations were “inadvertent” and that steps have been taken to ensure it won’t happen again.

“The university is remorseful that these violations occurred,” Mims wrote in a letter to the NCAA on Oct. 1. “We believe they were the result of sloppy management by our basketball staff.”