Now that we know his fate, I’ve grown tired of the subject. The Dawg fan in me hopes that Mark Richt is reading the situation correctly and that Gurley intends to return for the Auburn game (think the crowd will be nuts if that happens?); the part of me that shakes his head over the NCAA’s hypocrisy wouldn’t blame him a bit for calling his college football career over and looking out for number one. But here are a few last points I want to throw out.
- To the “Georgia should have done what FSU is doing” crowd: Yeah, we all know that it’s highly unlikely Winston signed hundreds of autographs that are now up for sale out of the goodness of his heart. But knowing and proving are two vastly different things. As long as the FSU athletic administration can wrap itself in the cloak of plausible deniability, it has the luxury of doing so. Once Bryan Allen showed up on Greg McGarity’s doorstep, Georgia lost that luxury. I can’t say that Georgia handled the investigation and the subsequent report to the NCAA perfectly – although I’m sure the Open Records requests to find that out are being prepared as you read this – but to insist that McGarity should have sat on his hands and dared the NCAA to do something is ludicrous.
- To the “Georgia once again is the shining city on the hill” crowd: You people really need to get over yourselves. Bryan Allen cuts both ways here. Once he threw his stones, Georgia had no choice but to suspend. There was nothing noble or heroic about the decision. Mark Richt is a stellar person, but this incident isn’t about him doling out justice to a kid who’s never been in trouble with his coaches. If you don’t believe me, maybe you’ll believe Mark Richt.
- To the “Gurley will be forever stained by this incident” crowd: AJ Green is amused.
- To the NCAA: Forget O’Bannon. Forget your defense of an obscene and anachronistic amateurism model that even you and your members don’t defend among yourselves when the doors are closed. What really sucks here is that people like Mike Slive, Jim Delany and Mark Emmert solemnly vowed several years ago that players like Todd Gurley deserved to be compensated for the total cost of attendance and since then, nothing has been accomplished on that front. Todd Gurley was found to have received three grand over a couple of years. The extra money you promised would have been at least that much. Had you been sincere about it, we wouldn’t be sitting here angry right now because Gurley wouldn’t have needed to resort to autograph sales to put a few bucks in his pocket. Just on that basis, if you had any sense of shame right now, you’d reconsider the punishment that’s been meted out in your answer to Georgia’s appeal. But the NCAA and a sense of shame… who am I kidding here?
Time to move on. I am. I hear this Nick Chubb is pretty good. Think he can run on the Florida defense?