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Grambling forfeits game after players refuse to travel

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10:12 AM ET 10.19 | Jackson State 1, Grambling State 0. That will be the score for the 2013 football meeting between the SWAC schools as Grambling, in the midst of a player revolt, was forced to forfeit its Saturday road game against the Tigers on Friday. Grambling players, incensed over the firing of head coach Doug Williams, their perceived lack of respect from university officials, long bus rides to games as far away as Indianapolis and poor facilities, banded together and decided not to play this week's game, resulting in the forfeit. Williams, who was fired as Grambling's coach in September after only the second game of the season, weighed in via text to USA Today: "I'm proud of them boys. They took a stance.'' SWAC commissioner Duer Sharp said according to league rules, Grambling will forfeit and the school will be fined.

New Orleans Times-Picayune

Doug Williams, Getty Images Doug Williams, Getty Images
October 19, 2013  10:18 AM ET

Sad. Very sad.

October 19, 2013  10:43 AM ET

So the inmates are running the asylum now????

October 19, 2013  10:53 AM ET

OK, but really. Doug Williams was fired because he went 1-10 last year , got his buttt kicked the first two games this year and who was his QB last year and this year? His son! He left Grambling, went to Tampa Bay for a while then comes back to Grambling . Why? To ensure his son is the quarterback!

Total BS by the players....and ex coaches just tweeting and adding to the fire....Drop football the rest of the year. Let them go to classes. Start over next year with kids that want to play football and not politics....

October 19, 2013  10:54 AM ET
QUOTE(#2):

So the inmates are running the asylum now????

Not if I ran the place. I tell them, OK. No football for you. Now get to class.

October 19, 2013  11:07 AM ET

After supposedly voting to play the game, only 22 players show up for the bus? This is going over the line and scholarships should be revoked... kids need to grow up and learn about reactions to their actions.

I am very suspicious of the Prez and the AD and how there is no money for the football team. They probably rely on government subsidies to operate... where are donations from their alumni? I don't know, but would guess that the Prez's personal bank account is healthy... just sayin'

October 19, 2013  11:53 AM ET

The first and biggest grip with the players is traveling by bus to distant away games. Last season, they traveled to Indy by bus. They left at 6 PM Thur evening and arrived in Indy Friday morning at 9 AM. They played Alcorn St. the next day and got beat by 39-0 or something. Alcorn St took a plane. They were told that they would have to go by bus to a game in KC and again to Indy in a bus this season. I guess they have had enuf.

The SWAC has a reason for playing in Indy ($$$$$$$$) but the schools can't afford those travel expenses, so GSU tells the players to take a 15 hour one way bus ride. The first practice boycott was a protest to the bus travel. I guess it unraveled more after that. Probably way more than this, but that would be on the inside.

October 19, 2013  11:57 AM ET
QUOTE(#4):

Not if I ran the place. I tell them, OK. No football for you. Now get to class.

And if you don't get to class, thanks for coming and we'll just take that scholarship back.

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October 19, 2013  12:26 PM ET
QUOTE(#3):

OK, but really. Doug Williams was fired because he went 1-10 last year , got his buttt kicked the first two games this year and who was his QB last year and this year? His son! He left Grambling, went to Tampa Bay for a while then comes back to Grambling . Why? To ensure his son is the quarterback!Total BS by the players....and ex coaches just tweeting and adding to the fire....Drop football the rest of the year. Let them go to classes. Start over next year with kids that want to play football and not politics....

Wow, didn't know that. Still a long time to be on a bus, though.

October 19, 2013  12:32 PM ET
QUOTE(#9):

Take the scholarship back first, give em a bus ticket back home, see if your second string now wants to play, down the line, etc.....

As they clearly don't want to ride a bus, maybe have their parents come get them.

October 19, 2013  12:42 PM ET
QUOTE(#11):

Wow, didn't know that. Still a long time to be on a bus, though.

Yes, but that is not why they fired the coach and the next guy too. And that is the nucleus of it all. Those "ex" coaches have been throwing gas on the fire. Just like the student sit in when some teacher gets fired. They only know part of the story.

Tell them point blank: We were here before you got here, we will be here after you go. You wanna go to college and play football or play Martyr? Feel free to apply at any other school you wish.

Doug Williams is behind it all....The rest can be worked out.

October 19, 2013  12:54 PM ET
QUOTE(#13):

Yes, but that is not why they fired the coach and the next guy too. And that is the nucleus of it all. Those "ex" coaches have been throwing gas on the fire. Just like the student sit in when some teacher gets fired. They only know part of the story.Tell them point blank: We were here before you got here, we will be here after you go. You wanna go to college and play football or play Martyr? Feel free to apply at any other school you wish.Doug Williams is behind it all....The rest can be worked out.

The situation is clearly out of control.
Probably best to suspend the rest of the games this season, tell the players they are free to leave or stay as students, hire a rebuilding coach, start recruiting for next season, tell any current players they can apply to play next year IF the new coach wants them.
Nothing to be salvaged this year.

Comment #15 has been removed
October 19, 2013  02:17 PM ET

Should have never gotten to this point. smh

October 19, 2013  02:21 PM ET

One report was that the state had cut something like 15-20 mill from the school. Supposedly the main reason for those long bus rides.

October 19, 2013  02:24 PM ET

I think it's hilarious how people claim that school should come first before athletics but then want to take scholarships when the team refused to play. Tells me that it's not about education in the minds of some football fans and more about just playing the game. Tell me, next time the argument comes up about paying players, where will you stand then?

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