The GHSA has ruled that the KIPP football program is banned from 2017 football postseason eligibility for its decision to voluntarily forfeit a first round playoff game at Banks County.
The postseason ban is a condition of the probation KIPP football has been placed on by the GHSA. In addition, KIPP was fined an undisclosed amount and ordered to pay restitution to Banks County and the 10 game officials scheduled to work the game.
GHSA executive director Gary Phillips confirmed the sanctions, which were issued by letter to KIPP last week. KIPP became the first known GHSA school to voluntarily forfeit a playoff game.
“I don’t recall (a team voluntarily forfeiting a playoff game) in my time as a principal or in my 16 years working in the (GHSA) offices,” Phillips said.
School officials at KIPP forfeited the Warriors’ playoff game following events that occurred after their regular season finale at Hapeville Charter. Members of the Warriors team allegedly participated in fights and damaged school property.
KIPP has five school days to appeal the decision. With the ruling handed down during the holidays, KIPP’s deadline to appeal is the first school week in January, Phillips said.
It’s not known if KIPP will appeal. Attempts to reach KIPP for comment via phone and email were not immediately returned.
Update (12:46 p.m.) KIPP director of communications Callie Hudak issued the following statement via email:
KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools is reviewing GHSA’s response and will discuss any next steps after the holiday break.