Why Vanderbilt was fined more than Tennessee, other SEC schools for field storming vs Florida
The league announced the fine alongside another for South Carolina after the Gamecocks won against Tennessee. USC, though, was fined $100,000. Tennessee was also fined $100,000 after last month's celebratory field rushing after the football win over Alabama.
Why is the dollar difference so great?
The league fines by the number of times schools have had field or court stormings since the policy was implemented in 2004. A first offense is a $50,000 fine, a second offense is a $100,000 fine, and third and subsequent offenses are fines of $250,000 per instance. The fines are placed into SEC Post-Graduate Scholarship Fund.
So the league judged Saturday's field rushing in Nashville as the third offense for Vandy since 2004.
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The fines have increased since the policy was instituted in 2004, from fines of $5,000 for a first offense, $25,000 for a second offense, and $50,000 for third and subsequent offenses.
The league policy is specifically called the "access to competition area policy" and is designed as a deterrent for schools to prevent fans from rushing the field after important and emotional victories at home. That has not stopped quite a few field storming events in 2022, including at Tennessee and LSU after wins over Alabama earlier this season as well as South Carolina last weekend.
There's no reset, either. The SEC cited a Tennessee basketball win over Florida in 2006 as the last time the Vols had a field or court rushing, which counted as an offense in the league's calculations.
Last month, the league announced it would re-assess whether the current fine structure is a proper deterrent to keep fans off fields and courts. Alabama wide receiver Jermaine Burton made contact with a female Tennessee fan as fans rushed the field following last month's UT win in Neyland Stadium.