Tunsil’s back … almost

As the Laremy Tunsil saga dragged on you kind of knew this was about only a loaner car.

According to NCAA charges there was more to it than that, and neither Tunsil nor the school denied the NCAA’s charges.

In fact, Tunsil issued an apology, presumably to the NCAA, according to the release.

To sum it up the charges include: use of three separate loaner vehicles over a sixth-month period without payment, a fourth-month interest-free promissory note on a $3,000 down payment for purchasing a used vehicle, two nights lodging at a local home, an airline ticket purchased by a friend of a teammate and one day use of a rental vehicle.

As a condition for reinstatement Tunsil must pay the value of the extra benefits to a charity, perform community service and make the vehicle down payment.

Tunsil won’t be available against Memphis. The Rebels, getting healthier on the line, should be able to block the Tigers, but Tunsil won’t have a Saturday to reacquaint himself with game speed before taking on Texas A&M and SEC sack leader Myles Garrett.

A seven-game suspension means Tunsil’s final season at Ole Miss will be reduced to five games and a bowl game assuming he remains healthy enough to play each one of them.

Here’s the complete news release that came a few minutes after 9 o’clock.

OXFORD, Miss. — On Monday afternoon, the University of Mississippi was notified by the NCAA that Laremy Tunsil will be suspended for a total of seven games and will return to competition on October 24.

The University initially withheld Tunsil from competition at the start of the season as both the NCAA and the University examined several alleged improper benefits.  During the course of the process, it was determined by the NCAA that Tunsil received impermissible extra benefits that included the use of three separate loaner vehicles over a sixth-month period without payment, a four-month interest-free promissory note on a $3,000 down payment for purchasing a used vehicle, two nights of lodging at a local home, an airline ticket purchased by a friend of a teammate, and one day use of a rental vehicle.  In addition, it was determined that Tunsil was not completely forthcoming when initially questioned by NCAA investigators regarding the loaner vehicles.  He later corrected his account and since apologized.

As part of his reinstatement conditions, the NCAA imposed a seven-game suspension, ordered Tunsil to pay the value of the extra benefits to a charity, perform community service, and he will also make the vehicle down payment.

Statement from Laremy Tunsil:

I take full responsibility for the mistakes I made and want to thank everyone for their continued support. I want to apologize to my teammates, coaches and the entire Ole Miss family for how my choices affected our program.  This was a learning experience, and I’m looking forward to being back on the field with my team and redeeming myself.  The last 10 months have been a physical and mental battle for me, but I love playing this game more than anything else.  I want to be here for my teammates who are depending on me to finish what we started together.

Statement from Hugh Freeze:

We have been supportive of Laremy throughout this process, and we are thankful he can return to competition starting with the Texas A&M game.  More important than his football ability is his character, and I am confident that Laremy will grow from this experience and continue to be a positive member of the University and our football team.

Denham Springs, La., native, Mississippian since 1989 with a stop in Meridian before arriving in Tupelo. Daily Journal beat writer since 1996, covering Ole Miss since 2002. Proud Northeast Louisiana alum. Follow me on Twitter @parrishalford and listen to John Davis and myself daily with The Ole Miss Beat on Rebel Sports Radio.

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  • Killer_Beeze

    Seven game suspension? What a laugh.
    Glad to have him back….for the final stretch…which without him, makes it extremely hard for any chance to win the West.


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