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IHSA: Rochester FB Players, Leonard Reinstated
ROCHESTER HIGH SCHOOL
I.H.S.A. EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR REINSTATES PLAYERS
October 28, 2013
IHSA Reinstates Ineligible Players Because of Schools
Handling of Violation of By-Laws
ROCHESTER, IL. –Praising the manner in which Rochester School officials responded to a violation of IHSA amateurism by-laws,
Executive Director Dr. Marty Hickman reinstated the eligibility of three Rochester High School football players.
The ruling, made by Dr. Hickman, cited By-Law 3.085 which requires that an official ruling be obtained from the Executive
Director before any student who violates the amateurism rules can be reinstated to eligibility.
By-Laws 3.081, 3.082, and 3.083 Dr. Hickman concluded that the three
players have been ineligible “since the time
the players accepted the championship rings,” that were paid for by the
Football Moms, a non-school organization. An internal audit and a
subsequent internal investigation by school officials found that the
amount that was paid per ring exceeded by $257 per
player the $200-per-ring contribution limit allowable under IHSA
by-laws. RHS Principal Dennis Canny and Activities Director J.R.
Boudouris formally reported the violation to the IHSA on October 24. The
school will not release the names of the three players.
violation of the amateur by-laws resulted in IHSA action under By-Law
6.021 which included a determination that the
players in question were ruled ineligible and that Rochester High School
must forfeit its September 6, 2013 football game against Sacred Heart
Dr. Hickman based his ruling to reinstate the players’ eligibility under 3.085 on the following facts:
The school’s own internal audit procedures discovered this violation of the Association’s rules.
The school immediately notified the Illinois High School Association of the violation.
The school immediately put measures in place to reduce the chances of a similar violation occurring in the future.
The school took action
to discipline the head football coach who was aware that the three
students had been provided with championship rings.
The school has taken possession of the three championship rings.
The school has
confirmed that the rings will not be returned to the students unless the
students and the school comply with the requirements of the
The students in question are otherwise eligible.
am elated with the Executive Director’s decision to reinstate the three
players,” said RHS Principal Dennis Canny.
“They are fine young men who had no involvement in or knowledge of any
violation of IHSA by-laws, and they deserve to be on the field. The
swift action taken by Dr. Hickman allows us to put this unfortunate
situation behind us and to move forward.”
Superintendent Dr. Thomas Bertrand said: “The quick response of our
high school administration to this situation
was critical. It was that response and subsequent action that resulted
in the decision to reinstate the players.” Bertrand added that Head
Coach Derek Leonard will coach the team in the upcoming playoffs.