The NCAA has granted Central Florida's appeal of a one-year postseason ban in football.
The decision was announced Monday, which will make it bowl-eligible as it moves into the American Athletic Conference this season.
In a news release, the NCAA wrote that its Committee on Infractions "determined the football postseason ban is excessive such that it constitutes an abuse of discretion."
UCF's was originally issued the ban as part of sanctions levied last July for major recruiting violations in football and basketball. It also received a one-year postseason ban in basketball, $50,000 fine, five years' probation, reduction of basketball scholarships, and limits on football recruiting.
The postseason ban was the lone penalty UCF appealed and allowed the Knights to participate in the Beef O'Brady's Bowl in 2012.
"We're certainly happy with this outcome," UCF athletics director Todd Stansbury said in a release. "We appealed the postseason ban for football because we felt it went beyond what was supported by the facts, and we're pleased the Infractions Appeals Committee agreed with us."
In the same release UCF President John Hitt said he was pleased with the decision and applauded the NCAA "for handling our appeal with care, competency and professionalism."
The punishments stemmed from a 2011 NCAA investigation that found the programs were involved with runners for sports agents and making cash payments to recruits.
Former athletics director Keith Tribble and assistant football coach David Kelly were cited for unethical conduct by the NCAA last year and resigned. Tribble was given a three-year show-cause order and Kelly a one-year order. It means any institution that hires them in that time must prove to the NCAA that they are rules compliant.
Basketball coach Donnie Jones was also given a three-year show-cause order.
When the NCAA released the penalties on July 31, it was believed that UCF was simply delaying its bowl ban by a year because the organization doesn't often overturn its decisions.
But Hitt called the appeal "well-grounded", noting that none of the players UCF was found to have recruited illegally ever actually played football at the school.
UCF is joining the newly-named American Athletic Conference, formerly the Big East, in all sports when it begins competing for the 2013-14 school year. Next season is also the final year of the conference's automatic qualifier status to the Bowl Championship Series in football.
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