Arizona State has told the NCAA and Pac-12 that they won’t participate in a bowl game in 2023 due to some past rule-breaking activities during former coach Herm Edwards’ time. Sources shared this with CBS Sports’ Dennis Dodd. The team learned about this decision in a meeting before their Sunday practice. The school is still being looked into by the NCAA for these past actions as they start the season with new coach Kenny Dillingham.
Edwards and his team allegedly invited potential players to Tempe, Arizona, during a period when such visits weren’t allowed because of COVID-19. Reports suggest that about 30 players visited the campus during this time. Several team members left after the inquiry started, and Edwards left not long after.
Ray Anderson, the athletic director for Arizona State, mentioned in a statement that they won’t be saying more about this due to the ongoing look into things and their need to keep things private.
On Sunday, Dillingham shared with reporters that Anderson told him about the bowl game decision early in the morning. Dillingham described the news as “upsetting” and observed its effect on the players during their practice.
He mentioned, “It’s tough to expect young guys to practice well after hearing such news. But they tried their best.”
Previously, Arizona State’s president, Michael Crow, had shown unhappiness with how slowly things were moving, saying to The Athletic in June 2021 that the NCAA was taking its time.
Edwards started working at ASU in 2018 and left during the 2022 season. Under his guidance, the team had a mixed performance, making it to a bowl game three times.
After the 2023 season, ASU will leave the Pac-12 to join the Big 12 with some other teams. Meanwhile, some other teams, like USC and Oregon, will be moving to the Big Ten.
ESPN first shared the news about ASU’s decision not to participate in a bowl game.
Even though people were hopeful about ASU’s future due to some recent changes, the team now begins their season knowing they won’t be in a bowl game. This is hard for everyone involved, especially since many of the team members and the coach weren’t around when the rule-breaking happened.
However, Dillingham remains positive. He shared that his team just needs to do their best every day, saying, “People might think we’re not motivated, but that’s an advantage for us.”
Arizona State will start their 2023 season at home against Southern Utah on Thursday, Aug. 31.