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SEC gets tough on coaches criticizing officials

The SEC announced today that violation of SEC Bylaw 10.5.4 will be enforced by suspensions and fines effective immediately.

What does this mean?

Head coaches, assistant coaches, players and anyone involved with the school's athletic programs cannot be publicly criticizing officials.

And any suspensions or fines by "assistant coaches or other support personnel" will be enforced against the head coach.

"There are proper channels available for head coaches to use when communicating officiating concerns to the Conference office," SEC Commissioner Mike Slive said on the conference's Web site.

So far this season, an SEC officiating crew has been suspended after making calls that could not be supported by video evidence. Also, coaches, most notably Lane Kiffin of Tennessee, have been reprimanded for criticizing officials. The issue intensified after Dan Mullen of Mississippi State and Kiffin criticized the officiating in their games last Saturday. Mississippi State lost to No. 1 Florida, 29-19, and the Volunteers lost to No. 2 Alabama 12-10.

Tags: SEC , Lane Kiffin , Tennessee , Dan Mullen , Mississippi State , Mike Slive

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