High School Football

Art Briles, undefeated Mount Vernon won’t forfeit games due to ineligible players

Former Baylor coach Art Briles and the Mount Vernon football team won’t forfeit any games this season because of two ineligible players, the UIL stated in an email on Thursday.

However, the players, Brock and Cameron Nellor, are still ineligible, the UIL said.

“The District Executive Committee (DEC) for District 7-3A met October 8 and ruled two Mount Vernon students ineligible for changing schools for athletic purposes. Because these students were ruled eligible in a previous DEC hearing, Mount Vernon will not forfeit any football games. The students are ineligible for varsity athletic competition starting on October 8, and can appeal this ruling to the State Executive Committee (SEC). A date for the SEC hearing has not been determined at this time,” the UIL said in the email.

Briles was hired at Mount Vernon in May, three years after being fired from Baylor after a number of his players were accused of sexual assault in a rape scandal.

Mount Vernon is 130 miles east of Fort Worth. Briles last coached Baylor in 2016.

Coach Art Briles watches his team practice at Mount Vernon High School, Monday, Aug. 5, 2019, in Mount Vernon, Texas. Briles was back at his roots Monday, coaching a high school football team in Texas after a season in Italy and more than three years after the two-time Big 12 champion coach was fired by Baylor in the wake of a sexual assault scandal. Tony Gutierrez AP Photo

The Tigers have started the season 5-0. They play in Class 7-3A Division 1 and travel to Jefferson at 7:30 p.m. on Friday.

Briles, 63, signed a two-year contract with Mount Vernon ISD. Prior to MVHS, he was coaching an American football team in Florence, Italy since last year. He also coached high school football from 1979 to 1999, including at Stephenville, where he won multiple UIL state titles.

Becoming the face of the scandal at Baylor, the school fired him, but paid Briles nearly $18 million.

As for the Tigers, they’re outscoring opponents 233-85. They beat Bonham (44-16), Farmersville (50-20), Canton (57-0), Winnsboro (47-28) and most recently, Hughes Springs (35-21) in Week 5.

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Born and raised in Hawaii, Brian Gosset graduated from Northern Arizona University with a degree in journalism before coming to Texas in 2014. He’s covered high school sports — yes, pretty much every high school sport — for the Star-Telegram ever since.