Prior to enrolling at Florida, Sharrif Floyd received cash and impermissible benefits totaling around $2,700 and for that, the NCAA has ruled that he must repay the money to charity and sit for two games.
If, um, those numbers don’t quite gibe with a recent transgression we’re all well aware of…
Under most circumstances, a $2,700 tab would warrant a four-game suspension (see last year’s verdict against Georgia wide receiver A.J. Green), especially involving benefits exchanged during the recruiting process (see last week’s verdict against multiple Miami players).
… that would be because the NCAA is making shit up as it goes along. Again.
In Floyd’s case, though, the NCAA cited several “mitigating circumstances” after examining “the totality” of the situation — beginning with the apparent fact that, according Floyd’s high school coach in Philadelphia, Pa., Ron Cohen, at least some of the improper benefits in question were generated by a school bake sale on Floyd’s behalf…
… But the second possible factor in reducing Floyd’s time from four games to two was, in the NCAA’s words, “his personal hardship.” Or, in Cohen’s words: “He didn’t have two pennies to rub together.” Floyd often relied on people outside of his family — including Cohen — for money to eat, as well as clothes and transportation.
Will Muschamp is pissed.
“I’m angered, disgusted and extremely disappointed that Sharrif will have to miss two games.
In my opinion Sharrif is getting lumped into what is bad about college athletics. As we indicated in the statement Saturday night his issue was not related to sports agents, University of Florida boosters or his recruitment to Florida or anywhere else.
Sharrif is what is good about college athletics – his life is about survival, struggle, disappointment and adversity. I have recruited kids that did not know where they would sleep that night or what they would eat. Growing up, Sharrif was one these kids. Sharrif’s life is also about triumph, honesty, integrity, determination, perseverance and character. The NCAA stated that he received preferential treatment; there is nothing preferential about his life…”
Now the point here isn’t to make light of the fact that Floyd has had a rough go of it, at least until he got to Gainesville. Nor is it whether or not the NCAA acted reasonably here. It’s that there’s no rhyme or reason to this stuff. Either you’ve got these strict guidelines that call for certain amounts to lead to certain penalties with no shades of gray, or you’ve got an amorphous situation where it’s going to less troublesome for some kids to receive benefits than for others based on whatever feels good at the moment.
It’s nice that the NCAA showed consideration for Floyd. But as a Georgia fan, I sure feel cheated right now.