2012 Division One Championship Vacated

The USAFL has concluded an investigation in relation to Dallas Magpie Jason Sutherland’s participation at the 2012 USAFL National Tournament and it was found that Jason was ineligible to participate with the Dallas Magpies at this year’s Nationals. The investigation revealed that Sutherland was an active member of Central District Football Club in Adelaide for their entire season which ended October 7.

Players and teams must abide by the “The 3 Point Qualification System” for eligibility to play at the USAFL National Tournament. “This rule is in place to allow for fair competition. The objective is to create participation throughout an entire season as opposed to one weekend,” commented USAFL President Andy Vanica. 

The investigation revealed that Dallas allowed a player to participate at Nationals who failed to meet the eligibility requirements. Further, the Dallas administration submitted false information to the USAFL regarding Sutherland’s game history. USAFL Secretary Andrea Casillas affirmed, “We as a league recognize the shortcomings of the current structure and have long term plans to integrate a player management system, however, we will always rely on the honesty of clubs and club officials no matter what process we have in place.” 

As a result of the investigation, the 2012 USAFL Division One Championship is vacated and the Dallas Magpies will be suspended from the USAFL 2013 National Tournament. Players however, will be allowed to participate via the exemption process and will be placed on teams as directed by the Tournament Committee. 

The USAFL Executive Board discussed different options for the 2012 Premiership. Included in this discussion was a potential Division 1 pool B runner-up Calgary vs. New York match or simply awarding the flag outright to New York. In the end however, the Board decided the most fair outcome was to vacate the 2012 Championship altogether. 

“Maintaining the integrity of the sport and the competition is number one on our list as a league and we want to make it very clear to all teams that this behavior is simply not tolerated,” stated Andy Vanica.

The Dallas Magpies officially notified the USAFL of a forthcoming appeal regarding the recent league ruling on Jason Sutherland. Per the Constitution, the club has 15 days to appeal. This deadline was November 13th at 9am for the information to be submitted to the USAFL.

Questions may be directed to USAFL President, Andy Vanica at president@usafl.com.

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