Football

Trinity Christian (Jacksonville) wins appeal, won't forfeit games due to ineligible player

Trinity Christian (Photo: Jason Beede, FloridaHSFootball.com)

Trinity Christian (Photo: Jason Beede, FloridaHSFootball.com)

It has been a wild 48-hours for the Trinity Christian Conquerors.

First, it was the Conquerors self-reporting an ineligible player on Friday afternoon to the FHSAA, taking their record from 5-3 to 0-8 as a result of forfeiting all the games played through Week 9. Second, it made the last District 3A-2 contest against Episcopal a must-win to force a three-way tiebreaker shootout on Monday.

The ineligibility of the player was a result of a wrong date on paperwork, as previously reported.

However, the slate has now been wiped clean for the Conquerors.

On Saturday night, the Jacksonville-based school announced their intention to appeal the forfeitures, according to the Florida Times-Union.

After exploring the situation further with the FHSAA we have submitted an appeal to the decision of automatic forfeitures on the basis that the decision to allow an ineligible player was unintentional. Neither the coaches or the administration knew or could have known that the student was ineligible based on the information that we had. Regardless if the outcome is positive or negative for the school, we are committed to following the ruling of the FHSAA. Due to the timing of the playoffs, we anticipate a ruling by tomorrow.

The result of the FHSAA hearing on the appeal came shortly after 3:00 p.m. on Sunday when Justin Barney of the Florida Times-Union, tweeted this out.

“They approved our appeal on the basis that there was no way we could have known this kid was ineligible,” he said. “That’s the approach they took on the appeal. It was done inadvertently with the knowledge we had,” Trinity Christian head coach Verlon Dorminey told the Florida Times-Union on Sunday afternoon. “We didn’t have the date that they had and we had no way of getting that date.”

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