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In his book, Integrity, Ted Engstrom told this story: For Coach Cleveland Stroud and the Bulldogs of Rockdale County High School (Conyers, Georgia), it was their championship season. They had 21 wins and 5 losses on the way to the Georgia boys’ basketball tournament in March, then a dramatic come-from-behind victory in the state finals.

But now the new glass trophy case outside the high school gymnasium is bare. The Georgia High School Association deprived Rockdale County of the championship after shool officials said that a player who was scholastically ineligible had played 45 seconds in the first of the school’s five postseason games.

“We didn’t know he was ineligible at the time; we didn’t know it until a few weeks ago,” Mr. Stroud said. “Some people have said we should have just kept quiet about it, that it was just 45 seconds and the player wasn’t an impact player. But you’ve got to do what’s honest and right and what the rules say. I told my team that people forget the scores of basketball games; they don’t ever forget what you’re made of.”

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