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Author Topic: SEC finally expands serious misconduct policy to include high school signees  (Read 52 times)

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High school recruits with past incidents of serious misconduct are now barred from the SEC.

Auburn beat writer breaks down impact to SEC.

The league's landmark policy, as expanded, now prohibits prospective athletes as well as transfers who've been convicted, pleaded guilty or no contest to a felony involving sexual assault, domestic violence or other forms of sexual violence or faced discipline at previous colleges for such interpersonal violence to compete in athletics at a conference school and includes the expectation of "due diligence" into reviewing a prospective athlete's background.

"I'm anxious to have less of these instances occurring, period," SEC commissioner Greg Sankey said on Friday...

The legislation becomes effective on Oct. 15 and does not apply retroactively, so it does not apply to high school signees from the last year who have or will enroll over the summer.

Auburn athletic director Allen Greene and Alabama athletic director Greg Byrne both voiced support for this week's proposal.

SEC first enacted the serious misconduct policy in 2015, which encompassed only transfers and came to be after defensive tackle Jonathan Taylor transferred to Alabama despite outstanding charges for domestic violence from his time at Georgia and was later dismissed from Alabama following an accusation of domestic violence, which was later recanted, there was doubt at all level of SEC leadership that a consensus would be reached to pass such legislation.

In 2016, Mississippi State was under scrutiny for the incident involving then-signee Jeffery Simmons, who was suspended for the 2016 season opener after a video showed him punching a woman. Simmons was charged with two misdemeanors, which technically means his incident would not have been covered by the league's policy.

Then-Mississippi State athletic director Scott Stricklin and coach Dan Mullen were heavily scrutinized for not releasing Simmons, a highly-touted recruit.

Both Stricklin and Mullen are now at Florida and the athletic director supported this week's proposal, while pointing out it would not have applied to Simmons.

"Jeffery would not have fallen under this policy. He had a misdemeanor. This is for severe crimes," said Stricklin...
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