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Tennessee DL Maurice Couch ruled ineligible for Oregon game

By Chip Patterson | Staff Writer

Tennessee defensive line Maurice Couch, the only active college football player named in Yahoo! Sports report on improper benefits provided to five SEC players, has been ruled ineligible for the Volunteers game against No. 2 Oregon on Saturday.

On Thursday, Butch Jones told Nashville radio station 104.5 that Couch would not make the trip to Eugene. He later confirmed the statements to the Associated Press.

"As of right now, the situation with Mo Couch is we've declared him ineligible for this game," Jones said. "Right now our compliance group is currently in the process of working through all the details and logistics of the situation. That's all we kind of know right now, but as of right now moving forward, he will not make the trip to Oregon."

The Yahoo! Sports report alleges that Couch received four payments from former Alabama defensive lineman Luther Davis, who has reportedly been serving as a middle man between NFL-bound SEC stars and the agents/financial advisers looking for new clients. Records indicate that four transfers totaling $1,350 were made to Couch.

Other players included in the report were former Tennessee quarterback Tyler Bray, former Mississippi State defensive tackle Fletcher Cox, former Mississippi State wide receiver Chad Bumphis and former Alabama offensive tackle D.J. Fluker.

Couch, a senior from Orlando, Fla., recorded four tackles and a sack as a reserve during Tennessee's 2-0 start.

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