The NCAA surprised many by denying the appeal of former UGA tight end Luke Ford to play immediately after transferring to Illinois this season.
The Illinois students haven’t forgotten about it.
At the Big Ten team’s season-opener on Saturday, the Illinois student section held up place cards that said “Free Luke Ford,” along with his No. 82 jersey number.
Ford, who is from Carterville, Ill., left UGA after last season to transfer to Illinois in order to be closer to an ailing grandfather. He applied for a waiver to be immediate eligibility, rather than having to sit out one season due to NCAA transfer rules.
Even though the NCAA granted waivers to high-profile transfers such as Justin Fields (UGA to Ohio State) and Tate Martell (Ohio State to Miami), Ford was turned down by the NCAA.
The decision upset some UGA fans, which led to the #FreeLukeFord phrase on Twitter.
On Saturday, the Illinois fans reminded the NCAA yet again about it curious decision on Ford.
— Jason Varner (@MrVarnerMath) August 31, 2019