Grambling to Appeal Conference Sanctions Over Forfeiture

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by Diverse Staff

Grambling State University announced that it would appeal financial penalties imposed Wednesday by the Southwestern Athletic Conference for the school forfeiting its Oct. 19 football game against Jackson State. Grambling officials estimated the sanctions would cost the school about $300,000 as the result of a $50,000 fine and the expense of having to play road games at Jackson State for the next three seasons.

Grambling’s players boycotted the Jackson State game to voice concern over what they alleged was a lack of commitment to the team by Grambling’s administration as evidenced by the school’s rundown facilities, long bus trips to road games and personnel decisions. The game also happened to be a part of Jackson State’s homecoming weekend festivities.

The conference also ruled that Grambling will pay Jackson State an undisclosed amount from its “future distribution amounts” to help Jackson State recoup lost money from the Oct. 19 cancellation.

“We’ve been working with our conference and our friends at Jackson State, so we knew this was coming,” said Grambling athletic director Aaron James. “It’s been a friendly and business-like series of conversations and exchanges and while we appreciate the desire and the intent, we disagree with this action and we have appealed.

“We notified the SWAC office today, filing an official appeal, making it quite clear why we think the fine and game decisions are excessive.”

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