A benches-clearing brawl during a game Thursday night has knocked defending national champion East Mississippi Community college out of the state playoffs.
That, in turn, has unexpectedly put Itawamba CC into the playoffs.
The state’s governing body, the MACJC, decided Friday to rule EMCC ineligible after a fracas near the end of the first half of the Lions’ game against Mississippi Delta. East Mississippi led 48-0 with 53 seconds when a benches-clearing brawl broke out. It took several minutes for order to be restored, and officials called the game at that point.
In the revised state playoff lineup, ICC will visit Mississippi Gulf Coast on Oct. 31, while Northwest Mississippi – now the No. 1 seed in the North Division – will host East Central.
ICC closes the regular season on Saturday, also with a trip to Gulf Coast (6-2), the South Division champion.