By Brad Locke/NEMS Daily Journal
Mississippi State has reported a pair of NCAA rules violations to the SEC regarding extra benefits for current student-athletes.
Both violations occurred between Nov. 18-25 – the school’s Thanksgiving break – and involved outside parties giving money to the athletes for different reasons. The athletes’ names were redacted from the records obtained by the Journal, and their sport was not named either.
Athlete One received benefits valued at $1,607.60 from someone the athlete considered a personal family friend and “did not consider this assistance inappropriate.” But it violated an NCAA bylaw prohibiting preferential treatment, benefits or services to enrolled student-athletes.
Athlete Two received benefits valued at $937.96 from a family friend of her boyfriend, who had invited the athlete on a trip.
In its letters to the SEC, both dated Jan. 9, MSU noted that in both instances the providers of the benefits do not represent the school’s athletics interests. Both athletes were declared ineligible, by MSU pending reinstatement from the NCAA reinstatement committee.
MSU did not impose any penalties upon itself because it did not arrange for any of the extra benefits. The SEC has not yet responded to the reports.