Ole Miss officially appeals sanctions handed down by NCAA

Ole Miss is officially appealing sanctions that were handed down after a five-year investigation into the Rebels’ program by the NCAA.

“We believe the additional penalties imposed by the (Committee on Infractions) are unwarranted, which we will make very clear at the appropriate time in our written submissions on the merits of our appeal,” Ole Miss Chancellor Jeffrey Vitter said in a statement.

Vitter and Ole Miss athletic director Ross Bjork said shortly after the punishment was handed down that the university would appeal the the 2018 bowl ban, but they did not do so officially until today.

“We could have lived with the consequences, but the bowl ban was unacceptable,” Vitter said on Dec. 1.

Ole Miss is already serving a self-imposed bowl ban for the 2017 season.

The Rebels will face several severe penalties in addition to the two-year bowl ban, if their appeal is not won.

List of sanctions

  • Three years of probation from Dec. 1, 2017, to Nov. 30, 2020.
  • A financial penalty of $5,000 plus 1 percent of its average football budget for three years, which was calculated at $179,797 (self-imposed by the university).
  • A postseason ban for the 2017 (self-imposed by the university) and 2018 seasons.  Ole Miss will appeal the 2018 bowl ban.
  • The head coach (Hugh Freeze) must serve a two-conference-game suspension for the 2018 season should any NCAA school hire him between Dec. 1, 2017, and Nov. 30, 2018.
  • An eight-year show-cause order for the operations coordinator, during which he must not hold any athletically related duties or have contact with prospective student-athletes and their families.
  • A five-year show-cause order for the assistant coach who facilitated standardized test fraud and living arrangements. He must not hold any athletically related duties during this time.
  • A two-year show-cause order for the other involved assistant coach. During this time, he must not participate in off-campus recruiting activities or hosting any meals for prospects or student-athletes.
  • A five-year show-cause order for the assistant athletics director. He must not participate in any recruiting activities during this time.
  • Vacation of all regular-season and postseason wins in which ineligible student-athletes competed.
  • Scholarship reductions through 2018-19, as detailed in the public report (self-imposed by the university).
  • Recruiting restrictions, as detailed in the public report.
  • Disassociation of boosters, as detailed in the public report (self-imposed by the university).

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