Georgia Southern Football Team on Probation

Stephanie Matzelle

The Georgia Southern University football team is on probation from July 7, 2016 to July 6, 2018 due to violations that occurred during the 2013-14 and 2014-15 academic years.

Two former employees of GS have broken the NCAA conduct rules. These former staff members provided three football players with unacceptable academic assistance.

One of the former assistant compliance directors provided a flash drive of their previous work to a football player enrolled in a class the assistant director had previously taught. The athlete used one of the assignments as his own work. When the director discovered what the athlete had done, she and the athlete came up with a plan to make the student-athlete responsible for the plagiarism. During this process, the athlete told investigators that the former staff member gave him the flash drive and told him to tell a false story.

Another former assistant director violated the rules by obtaining the login information of two football players and giving them ten extra credit assignments without their knowledge.

“I understand the penalties but why punish the whole team rather than just the three players,” Jarred Benefield, junior biology major, said. Benefield is a huge college football fan who believes the punishments are astounding.

GS was ordered by the NCAA to vacate any wins that occurred while the three athletes were academically ineligible.

The football program has lost two scholarships during the 2016-17 school year and will have to pay a $5,000 fine. They will also have to pay an amount equal to one percent of the GS football program budget. There will also be a 10 percent reduction in the number of visits for the football program.