SEC Dishes Out Huge Fines to South Carolina, Vanderbilt for Storming the Field

by Nick Geddes
(Photo by Austin McAfee/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

South Carolina (7-4) and Vanderbilt (5-6) will each pay a hefty price for pulling off upsets in SEC play Saturday.

Both schools are facing fines after their fans stormed the field following the wins. After South Carolina beat No. 5 Tennessee (9-2), 63-38, the stands of William-Brice Stadium emptied onto the field. The same occurred in Nashville at FirstBank Stadium after Vanderbilt stunned Florida (6-5), 31-24. The Commodores have been fined $250,000 by the SEC while the Gamecocks were levied a fine of $100,000.

Vanderbilt’s fine is larger as it’s the university’s third offense of the policy, while this is South Carolina’s second infraction. The Commodores were last fined following their men’s basketball game against Kentucky in 2016. The Gamecocks, meanwhile, were last fined in 2014 following their men’s basketball game against Kentucky.

South Carolina, Vanderbilt Fall Victim to SEC Policy

The SEC imposes escalating fines for field or court stormings.

“Access to competition areas shall be limited to participating student-athletes, coaches, officials, support personnel and properly-credentialed individuals at all times,” the SEC’s policy states. “For the safety of participants and spectators alike, at no time before, during or after a contest shall spectators be permitted to enter the competition area. It is the responsibility of each member institution to implement procedures to ensure compliance with this policy.

“Financial penalties are imposed for violations in all sports sponsored by the Conference. Institutional penalties range from $50,000 for a first offense to fines of up to $100,000 for a second offense and up to $250,000 for a third and subsequent offenses.”

The SEC announced earlier this month that an updated policy intended to address field or court stormings will be implemented for the 2023-24 athletic year.