The Calvary Christian football team last week was forced to forfeit its two wins from this season due to unknowingly using an ineligible player.
The player, who coach Brian Osborne declined to name, had moved from out of state and played on the team a year ago. By rule, the individual was allowed to repeat a grade if transferring from a public school to a private school.
However, the team realized on Sept. 10, just three days after defeating Covenant Christian for its second win of the season, that the player was participating in his fifth season of football, which is not allowed under Independent Christian Schools of Georgia and Alabama rules.
Osborne said the team reported its own violation as soon as it became aware of the infraction.
"We did a check of our athletes, saw this and presented all the information to the league," Osborne said. "We went through the appeals process, and unfortunately this was the outcome."
Osborne stressed that the player did nothing illegal or intentional.
"Different states just have different rules," he said.
Now, instead of a 2-3 record, the Knights are 0-5 and 0-1 in ICSGA South, a disappointing turn of events for a team that had a playoff berth on its mind when the season began.
Osborne said his players have handled the disappointment well, however, directing more of their concern toward the player who can no longer play with the team rather than at their own playoff chances.
"Nobody is upset," Osborne said. "It's difficult, yes, but they're more concerned about the player."
The coach said the player, who will no longer be allowed to dress with the team, has also handled the situation well.
"He's disappointed, but he's had a great attitude with it," Osborne said. "He's taking it better than I would have expected. He's still working hard, because he wants to play on the next level."
Calvary hosts Griffin Christian at Britt David Park for homecoming at 7:30 tonight.
David Mitchell, 706-571-8571