#5 – 1952 Kentucky Basketball
The first NCAA sanction ever handed down was a kind of informal “death penalty” against the most dominant basketball program in the country. Three starters for the defending NCAA and NIT tournament champion, the City College of New York, were arrested for their role in a mob-backed point-shaving scheme in 1951. The scandal eventually effected 32 players from seven schools, including four players from Kentucky, which had won NCAA titles under coach Adolph Rupp in 1948, 1949 and 1951, after the scandal broke.
Rupp infamously told reporters, “They couldn’t reach my boys with a 10-foot pole.” As it turned out, the NCAA could reach far enough and Kentucky was banned from the NCAA tournament in 1952-53. Pressure on other member schools to boycott games against the Wildcats forced UK to cancel the entire season.