Ole Miss has finally found out its penalties after a four-year long investigation by the NCAA. The Rebels got a new bowl ban, financial penalties, a loss of scholarships and individuals have also been penalized.
Ole Miss Gets Hit By NCAA
They will have a four-year probation, with two left to serve, on top of what they have already been serving during the investigation.
They will have an addition one year bowl ban, in addition to the self-imposed one they are currently serving, meaning no bowl games until 2019.
Ole Miss will lose 13 scholarships over four years. That is in addition to the 11 they have already lost as part of their self-imposed penalties. That makes six scholarships per year for four years.
Every coach named in the investigation will receive a show-cause tag by the NCAA. The length of the penalty varies by coach. The show-cause tag means that any school that employs them, including Ole Miss, must report to the NCAA on a regular basis with a plan to make sure the coach is compliant with NCAA rules, and provide regular status updates. It essentially equals a black ball on them being hired by any school any time soon.
Former head coach Hugh Freeze received a show-cause tag also. Freeze resigned before the 2017 season when it was revealed he had made calls to an escort service. The show-cause is directly related to the NCAA investigation into recruiting violations. The length of it is not immediately known. New head coach Matt Luke, who was an assistant on Freeze’s staff, was not named in the investigation, and thus has no individual NCAA penalties. Former assistant David Saunders’ show-cause runs for eight years. Former staffer Barney Farrar faces five.
The school will also give up its share of revenue from any bowl game SEC teams appear in. It is estimated that could cost them nearly $8 million per year over the two-year bowl ban period.
Of the 21 football allegations, 15 are classified by the NCAA as Level 1 charges — the most serious type. Some of them are more significant than others, ranging from former staffers allegedly fixing ACT scores to get recruits qualified for the football team to recruits allegedly hunting on boosters’ private land. There were also allegations of cash payouts to recruit Leo Lewis. He testified before the NCAA infractions committee and is now playing for Mississippi State.
Because of the length of the penalties, all Ole Miss players are allowed to transfer to another school without having to sit out the one-year usually mandated under NCAA rules.