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Dr. Saturday

Auburn reports itself for prematurely publishing recruit's bio on team website

Sam Cooper
Dr. Saturday
Rashaan Evans chooses Alabama as his commitment to play NCAA college football during national signing day on Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014, in Auburn, Ala
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Rashaan Evans chooses Alabama as his commitment to play NCAA college football during national signing day on Wednesday, Feb. 5, 2014, in Auburn, Ala. (AP Photo/Butch Dill)

The recruitment of Rashaan Evans came down to the wire. The Rivals five-star linebacker from Auburn, Alabama narrowed his choices down to two obvious schools: Auburn and Alabama.

The decision came all the way down to February 5, national signing day. Many thought that Evans, the top outside linebacker in the class, would pick the hometown Tigers. Auburn thought so too, and the school even prematurely published a signee bio for Evans on the team website in the moments leading up to his announcement.

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(via Outkick the Coverage)

(via Outkick the Coverage)

Evans ended up choosing Alabama, and fans and media outlets were quick to point out how Auburn jumped the gun on publishing the bio.

More than five months later, Al.com is reporting that the website snafu is actually a minor NCAA violation. Auburn’s compliance staff called the incident a “hack” by media personnel.

Here’s what the self-reported violation from March says:

Media personnel were able to hack into the site and ‘find’ the code and pull up the bio. The bio for Evans was then publicized on media sites. (Auburn) never posted the information on its own site, and never intended for the bio to be visible.

Al.com was quick to point out that the Evans’ bio was visible to anyone who entered the URL into their web browser, just like all of the other Auburn signees. So Evans’ bio was published, the link just wasn’t publicized on Auburn’s website like the other members of the Tigers’ class.

When submitting the violation to the NCAA, Auburn’s compliance staff said it will “work harder to hide the information in code, so that future successful hacking attempts do not result in violations."

“There was no intent to release the information; in fact, the release of the information was an embarrassment to the athletics department, particularly the media relations staff."

Evans’ father said his son’s decision "down to the wire” between Alabama and Auburn. The commitment solidified Alabama’s 2014 class as the best in the country, according to Rivals.

For more Auburn news, visit AuburnSports.com.

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Sam Cooper is a contributor for the Yahoo Sports blogs. Have a tip? Email him or follow him on Twitter!

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