SEC Doubles Penalties On Home Teams When Fans Rush Game Fields, Courts

New security policies have also been implemented by the SEC so schools can better control rowdy athletic event crowds.

SEC Doubles Penalties On Home Teams When Fans Rush Game Fields, Courts

Photo via Adobe, by Sergey Nivens

The Southeastern Conference (SEC) has unveiled new court- and field-storming policies, which double fines for home teams when fans rush the playing surface after games. More security measures for athletic events are also included in the new policies.

The first field-storming offense will cost the home school $100,000; the second will cost $250,000; and the third and subsequent violations will cost $500,000, reports CBS Sports. Previously, the fines were $50,000, $100,000, and $250,000, reports Gator Sports. In a new twist, the fines levied against offending home schools will now be paid to the visiting schools, rather than the SEC.

All SEC institutions will start with a clean slate in 2023.

The SEC defines field or court storming as “when the visiting team and/or game officials are still on the playing surface.”

A new part of the SEC policy will now allow schools to adopt policies allowing fans to come onto the field or court once all members of the visiting team have safely left the playing surface.

Each school must provide the SEC with a detailed field/court rush management plan by August 1. That plan should include how the university will communicate with fans to discourage them from coming onto the playing surface.

Additionally, each SEC school must provide security and uniformed police presence around each team and game officials before, during, and after every game to prevent contact with spectators.

Should a court- or field-rush happen, uniformed police officers and equipment must be provided so the visiting team members, coaching staff, and other personnel can exit the playing surface. When a rush occurs, both teams should forgo the traditional postgame handshakes and instead go straight to the locker rooms.

The SEC had considered making schools forfeit a home game after a fan-storming incident, but the conference decided against that penalty, reports

The increase in penalties comes after a spate of field-rushing incidents last fall. Tennessee fans tore down the goalposts following their team’s victory over Alabama, and only a day before that, LSU fans stormed the Tiger Stadium field to revel after their team’s upset of the Crimson Tide, reports Sports Illustrated.

Read the new policies here.

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About the Author

Robin Hattersley Gray

Robin has been covering the security and campus law enforcement industries since 1998 and is a specialist in school, university and hospital security, public safety and emergency management, as well as emerging technologies and systems integration. She joined CS in 2005 and has authored award-winning editorial on campus law enforcement and security funding, officer recruitment and retention, access control, IP video, network integration, event management, crime trends, the Clery Act, Title IX compliance, sexual assault, dating abuse, emergency communications, incident management software and more. Robin has been featured on national and local media outlets and was formerly associate editor for the trade publication Security Sales & Integration. She obtained her undergraduate degree in history from California State University, Long Beach.

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