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Georgia Football Hit Fined over Recruiting Violations

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The University of Georgia football team was fined $10,000 for several NCAA recruiting violations.

The violations occurred between March 2017 and January 2019, according to a report obtained by Marc Weiszer of the Athens-Banner Herald on Friday that showed that Georgia provided recruits with discounted or free school apparel three times.

Georgia sent the report to the NCAA on Oct. 11. The low-impact Level III violations led to several self-imposed and NCAA penalties, including a $10,000 fine, four fewer official visits in the current recruiting cycle, three fewer weeks of unofficial visits, nine fewer evaluation days this spring, three fewer evaluation days last fall, and limited postgame locker room access to “only a select number of prospects who are accompanied by institutional personnel.”

“When you look at certain violations, sometimes there’s some back and forth talking with the NCAA but they have the ability to impose fines as part of their penalties, and here they did,” Georgia executive associate athletic director for compliance Will Lawler said. “It’s not a clean line almost ever that these are all absolutely NCAA or all institutional penalties. You submit them and penalties can be increased.”

The Bulldogs also stopped recruiting the prospects involved, while they won’t be permitted to recruit at one of the involved high schools for two years. Georgia’s violations report included the intention to enhance the policies at the university bookstore, and better educate bookstore employees and all university head coaches on NCAA rules.

A football staff member was also barred from making phone contact with recruits for two weeks after retweeting, and impermissibly adding text to, a social media post that indicated a recruit had committed to Georgia. No Georgia staff members were permitted to contact the specific recruit for 30 days.

The final violation was the result of a Georgia football player’s picture being posted on a business’ social media account wearing their product. The player, who wasn’t paid, had granted the company permission to use the picture, but the school had it removed the same day it was posted.

The Bulldogs also reported secondary violations in the men’s basketball program, men’s tennis program, track and field program and women’s soccer program.

Georgia recruiting relations coordinator Dacia King was fired in April, while director of on campus recruiting Lukman Abdulai was suspended before resigning in June.

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