By Adam Brown
Ole Miss Athletic Director Ross Bjork revealed to the media at the baseball luncheon Feb. 12 he hoped the last portion of the NCAA football sanctions would not come to fruition. The final sanction resulted in a total of 33 vacated wins over six seasons.
Bjork announced Monday night at his first town hall meeting in Cleveland that the football team would have to vacate the wins as an additional part of the sanctions stemming from fielding ineligible players from 2010-2016.
In a letter posted to the UMAA case file website on Monday, Bjork said he communicated with the NCAA Media coordination and statistics staff as well as the SEC to confirm which wins they would vacate. The letter, addressed to David Warlock, director of the NCAA Media coordination and statistics staff, was sent Dec. 7, 2018.
The letter summarized the participation and eligibility of each of the 12 student-athletes from seasons 2010-2016 the NCAA pinged Ole Miss for infractions which led to the investigation.
Five seasons will be affected, except for 2015 which resulted in a Sugar Bowl victory over Oklahoma State. In 2015 former offensive lineman Laremy Tunsil, whose admittance to taking money from Ole Miss coaches played a major part in the investigation, sat out seven games during this season.
The vacations affect the records of former head coaches Houston Nutt and Hugh Freeze. Nutt’s record dropped from 24 wins to 18 wins and Freeze’s dropped from 39 to 12. Their new respective records are (19-26) and (12-25). In addition to the institution’s wins being vacated, each respective student-athlete has lost his statistical data.
The following games will be expunged from Ole Miss’ record:
2010: Tulane, Fresno St., Kentucky, UL-Lafayette
2011: Southern Illinois, Fresno St.
2012: Central Arkansas, UTEP, Tulane, Auburn, Arkansas, Mississippi State, Pittsburgh (BBVA Compass Bowl)
2013: Vanderbilt, SEMO, Texas, LSU, Idaho, Arkansas, Troy
The Music City Bowl victory over Georgia Tech in 2013 was also not affected because Tunsil did not play in the game.
2014: Boise St., Vanderbilt, UL-Lafayette, Memphis, Alabama, Texas A&M, Tennessee, Mississippi St.
2015: No games were vacated. During this season, former offensive lineman Laremy Tunsil sat out the first seven games before the NCAA declared him eligible to take the field.
2016: Wofford, Georgia, Memphis, Georgia Southern, Texas A&M
Bjork will hold a town hall meeting from 12:30 to 2 p.m. on Feb. 23 at the Inn at Ole Miss in Oxford.