Riser to miss three home games
The Lions baseball team will have to adjust to not having their Head Coach Matt Riser in the dugout this weekend against Northwestern State University because of a three-game suspension from the National Collegiate Athletic Association after the series against Texas A&M Corpus Christi. Riser was suspended for returning to the field after being ejected, which is against the out of sight and out of sound NCAA rule for misconduct.
Riser made the decision to run back on the field because of an altercation that occurred. Riser was not allowed to comment on suspension per NCAA rules and the assistant coaches were also not available to comment.
“Some kids came out of the dugout and Coach Riser came back on the field just to restore order,” said Athletics Director Jay Artigues. “When he did it, he did it to protect the players on both sides, but because he stepped back on the field it is an automatic suspension. He was doing what he felt was right and I agree with him, but you can’t step back on the field after being ejected.”
Rule 3-6 of the 2017 NCAA baseball rules states that “failure to leave sight and sound of
the playing field and grandstands after an ejection will lead to three-game suspension
added to any penalties already accumulated.” A similar rule was put in place for players and assistant coaches.
“One thing that the conference changed last fall and the coaches agreed that any trainer or player will get a one game suspension for getting thrown out of a game,” said Associate Commissioner in Strategic Communications for the Southland Conference George Stieren. “This is a NCAA rule, not a Southland Conference rule. The ‘out of sight and sound’ rule is an old rule. Riser broke that rule when he left the field and came back.”
The assistant coaches Andrew Gipson and Daniel Latham are stepping up to keep the team focused on the field with the suspension of Riser.
“Coach Gipson will be acting head coach and coach Latham will handle all of the calls on both offense and defense,” said Artigues. “Riser has a great staff and the team will be in good hands.”
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