NCAA rejects latest JMU appeal for bowl eligibility

A James Madison fan holds up a sign, "Let them bowl," during a football game against UConn on...
A James Madison fan holds up a sign, "Let them bowl," during a football game against UConn on Nov. 11, 2023(WHSV)
Published: Nov. 15, 2023 at 7:22 PM EST
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - WHSV has confirmed multiple reports, which includes ESPN and The Athletic, that the NCAA has rejected James Madison’s latest waiver request for immediate bowl eligibility for the football program.

Last week, JMU wrote a letter to the NCAA, asking the organization to reconsider its decision to reject JMU’s transition waiver from FCS to FBS from two years to one. In April, the NCAA rejected JMU’s initial appeal.

“We’re obviously disappointed in the outcome of the NCAA’s review of our request for bowl relief,” said JMU Athletics in a statement. “We’re saddened for our university community and, in particular, we’re devastated for our football program, the coaches and student-athletes who have orchestrated an amazing season and earned the opportunity. As we turn the page, we have an incredible week lined up with College GameDay here and our final home game, so we’re focused on maximizing these moments for our university and celebrating our senior class.”

A spokesperson for Virginia Attorney General Jason Miyares issued the following statement:

“Despite their undefeated record and historic season, the NCAA again refused to allow JMU to be bowl- and postseason-eligible. The Attorney General is disappointed and will consider all legal options to support the JMU community and the future of their student-athletes.”

The decision means the Dukes are ineligible to compete for a Sun Belt Conference Championship. The only way the Dukes can play in a bowl game is if there’s not enough bowl-eligible teams to fill all the bowl games.