SMU Football Scandal

by: Payton Christensen

Video: Trailer for Pony Excess, the ESPN documentary about SMU's death penalty sentence

What happened at SMU

Coach caught in the act

Ron Meyer

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The punishment

The Death Penalty

  • The 1987 season was canceled; only conditioning drills were permitted during the 1987 calendar year.

  • All home games in 1988 were canceled. SMU was allowed to play their seven regularly scheduled away games so that other institutions would not be financially affected.

  • The team's existing probation was extended until 1990. Its existing ban from bowl games and live television was extended to 1989.

  • SMU lost 55 new scholarship positions over 4 years.

  • SMU was required to ensure that Owen and eight other boosters previously banned from contact with the program were in fact banned, or else face further punishment.

  • The team was allowed to hire only five full-time assistant coaches, instead of the typical nine.

  • No off-campus recruiting was permitted until August 1988, and no paid visits could be made to campus by potential recruits until the start of the 1988-89 school year.

Where the team is now

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Why this was a huge impact on 1980's

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