SEC reportedly considering ramping up punishments for storming the field
The SEC is reportedly considering ramping up punishments for fans storming the field after big wins, according to a report from Sports Illustrated.
The premise of losing a future SEC home game is just one of the policy changes that has been discussed by the working group, Pat Forde reported. An even more drastic one — forfeiture of the game in which the field storm occurred—is unlikely to gain much traction. But there is general agreement that something more needs to be done beyond hitting schools in their fat wallets.
SEC teams for years have all but laughed off fines for fans running on to the field or court. The penalties currently stand at $50,000 for the first incident, the second is $100,000 and each subsequent violation is $250,000. But Tennessee officials, for example, enjoyed victory cigars while their fans rushed Neyland Stadium last season. Similarly, when the goal posts went down, Tennessee President Randy Boyd said of the cost, “It doesn’t matter.”
Tennessee Athletics Director Danny White even joked about the fine, and other administrators around the league have offered similar responses in recent years.
Forde laid out this possibility for the upcoming season, Auburn upsets Georgia at Jordan-Hare Stadium, the first victory over the rival Bulldogs since 2017 by storming the field.
“And in response, the SEC moves Auburn’s next home game against Georgia, in 2025, to Athens. The Tigers would play the Bulldogs between the hedges three straight seasons, 2024 to ’26. That would be the price for storming the field.
Sound like a draconian penalty for something that has been part of the fabric of college sports for decades? Well, it’s on the table as a possible sanction as the SEC searches for a stronger deterrent to field storming than six-figure fines.”