Gulf football players Ty’Shon Peters and Kris Aratchiysky, who transferred from Anclote and were ruled ineligible by the Florida High School Athletic Association right before the season started, are back on the team.
After an investigation into recruiting under former coach Jay Fulmer, Gulf identified Peters, a junior, and Aratchiysky, a senior, as having been recruited in a self report to the FHSAA. Fulmer, who admitted to improper contact with at least one of the players, resigned Aug. 23 and was reassigned to Pine View Elementary School and Connerton Elementary School.
The FHSAA accepted the report and Gulf’s self-imposed sanctions, but declared the players ineligible for the season pending Wednesday’s appeal. A six-person committee voted 4-2 in favor of reinstating Aratchiysky and 5-1 in favor of Peters.
After missing five games, both will be back in the lineup Friday in a Class 3A, District 7 tilt against Pasco.
“It feels so good to be back,” Peters said. “I’m just ready to get back out there with my family and help them in any way possible. I think we can make a difference this Friday vs. Pasco.”
“This feels great,” Aratchiysky added. “I was in tears when I heard the news. The committee made the right decision. I was crushed when I was told I couldn’t play football earlier in the year. I’m just so happy I can help the team. There’s no better feeling than this right now.”
Peters was Gulf’s second-leading passer last season, throwing for 365 yards and two touchdowns before transferring to Anclote in the spring. Aratchiysky was Anclote’s top running back last season, leading the Sharks with more than 800 yards.
“We now have two dynamic players joining our team and they bring a lot to the team,” said coach Ken Hollar, a former assistant who was named coach Sept. 3. “…The locker room went crazy when they heard the news. …It was worth the wait for the two.
“My question is now when is Fulmer allowed back? I think this proves that (Jay) did nothing wrong and he never recruited in the first place.”