High school suspends football program, fires coaching staff after using player under fake name

Officials at a private Missouri high school suspended its football program, fired all the team’s coaches and forfeited its undefeated season after learning coaches had been using an ineligible player.

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Cardinal Ritter junior running back Bill Jackson, who wore No. 4, was ineligible to play after being ejected from a 2018 championship game. However, Jackson, disguised as freshman "Marvin Burks," wearing No. 24, played -- running for 109 yards, including a 56-yard touchdown in a recent 32-21 win.

Jackson’s tattoos gave away the ruse.

Cardinal Ritter school President Tamiko Amistead announced the self-imposed sanctions Friday, the St. Louis Post Dispatch reported.

The Lions were undefeated seven games into the season. They will forfeit those games, as well as the final two.

The school’s longtime athletic director also retired.

Coach Brandon Gregory apologized for the mistake.

"That's kinda my wrongdoing of not knowing the rules and that he shouldn't have not sat out the jamboree, he should have sat out week one so that's what happened," he said, CBS Sports reported.

The school did not indicate when or if it would restart its program.

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