Cobb County

High school forced to forfeit entire football season due to ineligible players

MARIETTA, Ga. — Marietta High School has been forced to forfeit all of the football games they played in 2017 because they say the team had ineligible players on the roster.

Officials with the Georgia State Athletic Association say the two ineligible student-athletes played all season long. The high school now must forfeit all eight of its wins.

The Marietta High School Blue Devils were on a winning streak reaching the state quarterfinals until they lost. But how they came so close has been under scrutiny after somebody tipped off the Georgia High School Association late June.

The GHSA ordered the school to launch an investigation. It did and said two players claimed to have parents who worked at the high school, and there’s a policy that allows children of employees to attend a MCS school.


Documents obtained by Channel 2's Wendy Halloran show that the eligibility coordinator did not correctly complete the forms and Athletic Director Paul Hall, her supervisor, did not review the information on the forms. 

"The adults who made the decision should be penalized because the kids had nothing to do with it," said Lisa Reliford.

The GHSA determined Marietta High School played two ineligible players the entire season. They must now forfeit all of the games they participated in.

“It’s kind of interesting how they knew about this but they didn’t do anything about it. You know, the kids may or may not have known about it but if they didn’t know about it, now they have to forfeit their whole season so it’s kind of terrible for them," said Lisa Simpson.

The Athletic Director resigned. The school has also been fined $1,500.

A spokesman for the Georgia High School Association said it won't comment on ongoing investigations and the school still has the right to appeal.

Halloran received a lengthy statement from Marietta City Schools, which reads in part:

"One student legitimately moved into the Marietta attendance zone at the time of enrollment and later moved outside the mcs attendance zone; the other student never established residency in the MCS attendance zone."