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Post-game field rush by fans earns South Carolina a hefty SEC fine

A subsequent fine would rise to $250,000.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Saturday's upset win over Tennessee still has Gamecocks fans celebrating. But the actions many took after the clock hit zero are going to cost the University of South Carolina some cash.

The Southeastern Conference (SEC) announced on Sunday that the university will be fined $100,000 for violating the league's "access to competition area" policy.

In short, the policy prohibits access to competition areas to all but student-athletes, coaches, and officials as well as support personnel and others with the correct credentials. This not only applies to the time before and during the game but also after. 

In its statement on Saturday, the SEC said the policy is meant to protect fans and participants and is to be enforced by member institutions.

Fines begin at $50,000 and go up in increments for successive violations. Based on the statement, this is South Carolina's second offense since the policy was enacted in 2004 - the first being in 2014 after the men's basketball game against Kentucky.

A third would mean a much larger fine of $250,000. And that's how much another university, Vanderbilt, is being fined after its game against Florida on Saturday.

Its most recent fine also came following a men's basketball game in Kentucky - but in 2016. 

The SEC said these funds go into the SEC Post-Graduate Scholarship Fund.

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