“They just take abiding by the law and discipline very serious around here.”

While we’re on the subject of negative recruiting, how much do you think Georgia’s coaches face every day regarding local law enforcement?

I know this: Kirby cares. I heard there was a team meeting after he had to give Clay his walking papers and that Smart went off on the Bulldogs. He was none too happy to have to deal with these issues, much as he was not at all happy with the headlines splashed across the Internet on Thursday and last week.

I was talking on the phone to the mother of one of the Bulldogs’ new players the other day, not long after Clay was arrested. She asked me, quite concerned and sincerely, “is this always the way it is at Georgia?”

It always helps to have a receptive audience.

That being said, I’m not sure I agree with Towers that coaches need a financial incentive, either positive or negative, to avoid player arrests.  I’m guessing Smart’s already got plenty of motivation on that front.

30 Comments

Filed under Crime and Punishment, Georgia Football, Recruiting

30 responses to ““They just take abiding by the law and discipline very serious around here.”

  1. I do believe campus and local police in Athens have a collective chip on their shoulders for some reason. If the cops in and around the other SEC campuses were as by-the-letter as the Athens guys seem to be, UGA wouldn’t be the headline makers they sometimes are. They’d likely be middle of the pack.

    • Scott W.

      I’m not one to use race as a reason often but in this case it’s undeniably true.

      • JCDAWG83

        Are you saying the players weren’t really breaking a law and they were only arrested because of their race? Trust me, the Athens cops are equal opportunity assholes when it comes to students or someone in their 20s.

        • Scott W.

          No I’m saying the cops handle black people differently in Athens. Being a football player doesn’t absolve these guys of that.

        • Dylan Dreyer's Booty

          There is not likely a systematic racism, but at least a couple of times someone gets stopped for driving while black and ‘oh, look here’ happens. It’s essentially how Ledbetter got off.

          In contrast, a guy ran his car into my house after the G-Day game doing about $15k worth of damages in various places. At the time, he said he had insurance, and produced a card and he went to the hospital, etc. Then his insurance company said there was no coverage. So I took that letter to the ACCPD, and called the officer, but they haven’t done shit about that. Too bad he wasn’t a football player. Dude would be in jail.

          No excuse for knuckleheads, but equal protection is a worthy goal whatever your ethnicity.

          • Scott W.

            I’m sorry about your house. The above poster is right in that it is any violation to keep the coffers filled. This isn’t about the inadequacy of the ACCPD. It’s about how in town there is a distinct difference between how people are treated. Football players are usually young black men and can get caught up in it. Youth can compound misjudgment as well.

          • JCDAWG83

            That sucks about your house. Does the guy live in Athens? If so, I’d be on the cops day and night until they arrested him and I’d use the way they treat students as the hammer to drive home my point. I wouldn’t let it go until they were sick of hearing from me and arrested the guy just to get me to stop calling them. If he doesn’t live in Athens, I don’t think there is much the Athens cops can do. They can’t be expected to go to Atlanta to arrest a guy for driving without insurance.

            • DawgPhan

              Please do this. I am sure the cops would just love you hounding them day and night and throwing their records against athletes in their faces. I am sure they would get right on that case for you.

              lulz…

            • Reipar

              Arrested him for what? Driving without insurance is a ticket not an arrest.

              • Dylan Dreyer's Booty

                Hmmm. Lots of things are tickets for you and me, but we’re always hearing about players getting arrested and making bond for what we think are just ticket offenses. I’m not excusing football player conduct, but it does seem like they get treated differently than you and me. I don’t want them to look the other way if there is a legitimate crime occurring; just treat players like you would treat you and I.

                • Reipar

                  They are treated the same. You do not have a license you should get arrested. You have a suspended lic you get arrested. You miss your court date for a ticket guess what. A bench warrant is issued.

          • The Bruce

            Athens cops only care about crimes that make them cash. DUI, underage drinking, noise ordinance violations…easy money. Actually doing detective work and solving cases? Ain’t nobody got time for that.

  2. Macallanlover

    As a parent I would be concerned about the excessive attention to minutiae on campus and in the city limits by law enforcement. I simply wouldn’t want my child to leave with a record on some nitpicking rule violation while more serious crimes are missed while they are distracted. I would not be concerned by an athletic program that enforces the rules. Not UGA’s fault law enforcement and the media over play these situations, but they could play a role in influencing LE that they are more concerned about student safety as in DUI, physical assaults, real drugs (not weed), etc. Despite the number of minor charges, parents should also note the minimal number of significant offenses compared with other programs we compete with for talent, I know I would consider that.

    And the idea of incenting coaches with a bonus for fewer arrests is just silly. Players don’t act stupid because the coach tells, or encourages the to, and you would not change behavior, only incent sweeping more under the rug to make your bonus.

    • DawgPhan

      So confused by your sudden soft on crime stance?

    • I agree Mac. I think this is about Adams (still with this asshole!?) and revenue. Its crazy–any time an arrest is made downtown for underage drinking there is a crack deal going down within a quarter mile. The difference between the student and the crack dealer is the ease that the PD can generate revenue. The student (or more likely their parents) will pay to make sure it goes away. The crack dealer will sit in jail. And most of this overzealousness still comes from Adams’ hatred of the ‘party school’ moniker.

    • Walt

      What nitpicking rule violations are you referring to? Driving without a license isn’t a crime that doesn’t bother me. It won’t follow you to your grave, and I wouldn’t blame the police if my kid got arrested for that. I don’t have a problem with a kid smoking weed or drinking as long as they’re not driving. The $1,000 worth if property damage does bother me whether it was done with a BB gun or a claw hammer. It was very immature and foolish, and BB gun or not, deserves punishment.

  3. pumblechook114

    It is telling that of those six arrests, two were for the infamous BB gun incident, one was for relatively minor traffic violations, and one was for underage possession. In the media (and public perception of those who don’t follow the program closely), these arrests seemingly carry the same weight as vastly more serious ones such as illegal firearm possession, assault, trafficking weed, etc…

    I don’t think Georgia should be like Florida or Florida State (or Tennessee, for that matter). Maybe its a pipe dream, but when it comes to law enforcement athletes should receive the same consideration as any other typical college student. As an example, when I was at UGA I had a friend who was caught smoking a certain green illegal substance on campus out of a certain apparatus. Jimmy Williamson’s finest caught him dead to rights, and you know what happened? They made him grind the remaining green substance into the dirt and sent him on his way. Didn’t even confiscate said apparatus. You tell me what you think would’ve happened had my buddy been a UGA football player.

  4. PTC DAWG

    They want to arrest kids and get the money train rolling. Fines…probation officer fees…etc…a big damn racket.

    Did we really arrest someone for having a pill in their pocket?

    • doiknowu

      I was a pharmacist back in my working days, and people would regularly come to me with loose tablets/capsules asking me to identify them. I would always caution them that it was illegal to carry medications out of their original containers in Georgia. Even a routine traffic stop could result in an arrest if the officer involved was looking for a reason to make one. Given Williamson’s history, his troops are ALWAYS looking for reasons.

      • Dylan Dreyer's Booty

        The statute is there, but I know at least one Superior Court judge that won’t allow prosecution of it. Why? Because *he puts his own medications in one of those plastic compartment sorters which all pharmacies sell, and when he leaves home, he takes it with him.

    • DawgPhan

      today’s for profit probation system loves the people who are forced to spend $1000s on small charges.

      • JCDAWG83

        I’m generally all for privatizing govt services when possible but the criminal justice system is not a good place for that. There is a lot of difference in mowing the grass in public places and tracking and supervising criminals.

    • JCDAWG83

      He was arrested for a number of charges in that incident and the pill was one of them. I agree about keeping the money train rolling but try riding around with a baggie full of your prescription medicine and see how that works out for you in the event of a traffic stop.

  5. DawgPhan

    Also UGA should absolutely be held in a negative light over the police presence in Athens. I hope that every schools beats that point into the ground when recruiting against UGA.

    If I was recruiting against UGA I would let every single momma know that UGA is going to throw your child under the bus. If he makes a mistake his mugshot will be on the front page of the AJC for all to see. If he slips up UGA will personally hand deliver the evidence to the NCAA and makes sure he is punished to the full extent of the law and then maybe a little extra to be sure.

    UGA could do something about the police in Athens, but they choose not to. They should be punished for their inaction.

    • Come on–its a stellar marketing ploy. What are you talking about!?

    • Walt

      Jesus! You make Athens sound like a police state. Is it really that bad? I’ve lived in Athens since 1992 and I don’t think the cops are any better or worse than other places.

  6. Herschel Krustofsky

    If anyone pays any attention whatsoever to how alumni are treated by local police (especially UGA police) on gamedays, as well as how the general student population is treated, they shouldn’t be surprised AT ALL at how many run ins the football team has with the local law enforcement.

  7. W Cobb Dawg

    If I was a recruit’s grandparent, I’d simply ask if the kid had ever smoked pot. If the ‘honest’ answer is yes, I’d assume it’s gonna happen again. And sadly, I’d tell him UGA is probably not a good choice. Smoking weed, and other very minor ‘offenses’, are going to lead to a lot of problems at UGA that many, no most, other schools don’t experience.

    Now if you’re a kid like AM, self motivated and a great student, UGA is exactly the school for you.

  8. Soccerdawg

    After Baylor, where my daughter attended, I will never advocate for law enforcement treating the football team differently.