LSU bans OBJ, docks scholarships in self-imposed penalties
LSU has banned Odell Beckham Jr. from its facilities for two years and docked itself eight scholarships as part of self-imposed penalties over improper payments to players, the school said Wednesday.
The school hopes the proactive moves will end the penalty phase of a two-year NCAA investigation into $180,000 in impermissible payments to the father of a former football player, a Level I violation, the most serious.
The banning of Beckham stems from his behavior last January when the Cleveland Browns star let fly with $2,000 worth $100 bills after LSU defeated Clemson to win the national championship, a Level III violation. Beckham played at LSU from 2011 to 2013.
LSU confirmed the penalties in a statement to Sports Illustrated on Wednesday.
“LSU has worked proactively and in cooperation with the NCAA to identify and self-report any violations that occurred within our football program,” LSU senior associate athletic director Robert Munson said in the statement. “We believe these self-imposed penalties are appropriate and we will continue to coordinate and cooperate with the NCAA on this matter.”
Per SI, LSU notified the NCAA that in addition to docking itself eight scholarships over a two-year period, the school is also:
–Elimination of 12.5 percent of official and unofficial visits;
–21-day reduction of the normal 168 days of allowable off-campus contacts;
–Six-week ban in communication with prospects.
At the heart of the investigation was the $180,000 in stolen money paid out to the father of former LSU offensive lineman Vadal Alexander by booster John Paul Funes, who admitted to embezzling more than half a million dollars from Our Lady of the Lake Hospital in Baton Rouge.
The money paid to James Alexander from 2012 to 2017 was for a “no-show job.”
–Field Level Media