Your Honor, we’d like to dismiss all charges.

You will be pleased to know that life with the Tunsils is heading back to normal, or at least what passes for normal.

Domestic violence charges against both Ole Miss left tackle Laremy Tunsil and his stepfather are likely to be dropped on Monday.

Tunsil’s attorney, Steven Farese, told The Clarion-Ledger on Friday that both attorneys mutually agreed to have their clients sign dismissal forms earlier in the week. Those forms are currently with the Lafayette County Justice Court’s clerk, officials said, and will be reviewed to be signed by Judge Johnny McLarty on Monday.

Farese said he sees no reason why the matter will not be settled then.

Matthew Wilson, the attorney representing Tunsil’s stepfather, Lindsey Miller, confirmed that both parties agreed to drop the charges.

The motivational stone for kissing and making up should be pretty obvious. Dude’s gotta play so dude can rake after this season.

Of course, that leaves the rock that Miller turned over when he was pissed off at the golden goose.  That’s why there was this on the record moment during the hearing which was completely irrelevant to the matter being heard by the court:

Justice Court Judge Mickey Avent dismissed a protective order Miller levied against Tunsil during the case’s only court hearing on July 14, which also presented Farese with an opportunity to combat Miller’s claims that Tunsil accepted a ride from an agent the night of the fight, which would be an NCAA violation.

Farese admitted there was an agent present, but said Tunsil left in a rental car driven by a friend named “Zo,” who flew from South Carolina to Memphis and rented the car to drive to Oxford.

Before you roll your eyes over this, look on the bright side.  If Tunsil had signed with Georgia, you can bet the NCAA would be all over Zo’s ass right now, Tunsil would be preemptively suspended, McGarity would be figuring out the necessary level of NCAA groveling the school would need to do and we’d be fretting about how many games the offensive line would be in turmoil waiting for Tunsil’s return. ‘Cause that’s how the Georgia Way rolls, peeps.

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Filed under Crime and Punishment, The NCAA

A play by any other name would smell as sweet

I tend to be a little skeptical about “it’s so easy” declarations, so I can’t say I’m totally relieved to hear John Theus’ take on the transition at offensive coordinator.

Having learned the new scheme this past spring, offensive tackle John Theus believes the same. Theus said there hasn’t been much of an adjustment for the players with Schottenheimer outside of learning a few different names. Otherwise, the offense, in philosophy, is pretty much the same.

“It’s not that hard. It’s pretty much the same kinds of plays and same schemes — a little bit different,” Theus said. “The main thing is just learning the new terminology. It’s not all that difficult, you just have to condition your mind differently and just be on top of things. Once you start getting some repetitions with it, it becomes second nature.”

Now it may be he’s offering that perspective strictly from the vantage point of his position group.  That would be more understandable, given the level of experience Georgia’s offensive linemen have.

That being said, there will be plenty of time for repetitions in August to get the troops acclimated to whatever changes are in store.  I just worry how this may feed into this season’s regression to the mean concern for me – how much of Georgia’s +16 turnover margin from 2014 fades away in 2015?

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Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

Raises for everybody!

Just the other day, Jere Morehead had this to say about Georgia’s new-found spending ways.

“Certainly the members of the Southeastern Conference are doing very well now,” Morehead said, “but I think it is also important to be prudent and careful because you do not know how long this period will last and you want to be thoughtful of how you spend your resources…”

Which is an interesting framework to view some news Marc Weiszer just teased out.

Tight ends coach and co-special teams coordinator John Lilly and outside linebackers coach Kevin Sherrer each got raises of at least $100,000 to bring them each to $350,000 annually, according to information provided to the Athens Banner-Herald in an open records request. Lilly made $250,000 last year and Sherrer made $220,000.

Athletic director Greg McGarity said those boosts in salary happened “months ago.”

Former Georgia wide receivers coach Tony Ball was the fifth highest paid assistant last year at $260,000. Now every Georgia assistant makes more than that with new running backs coach Thomas Brown and inside linebackers coach Mike Ekeler at $275,000 each. Ekeler got a pay raise of about $25,000.

Georgia’s nine assistant coaches are making a combined $4,810,200, including $1.3 million for defensive coordinator Jeremy Pruitt and $960,200 for new offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer. Georgia assistant coaching salaries totaled about $3.31 million last year.

Only LSU ($5.49 million) and Alabama ($5.21 million) paid their assistants more than $4.81 million last year, according to a salary survey compiled by USA Today.

Georgia is now paying its assistant staff more money than Auburn (with Boom as college football’s highest paid assistant, mind you) is.  Let that roll around in your brain for a second.

These guys are starting to freak me out a little.

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Filed under Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness

Even when you think you know, you don’t really know.

Judging by the emails and comments I get, a lot of people seem to be more certain who Georgia’s starting quarterback is than Mark Richt seems to be.

But Georgia coach Mark Richt, asked about the situation frequently over the summer, has insisted that nothing has been decided, that the three players will enter preseason practice even and that a starter won’t be decided until the week of the season opener — if then.

“The reality is, at quarterback, until you get in that game and start playing, you really don’t know,” Richt said. “You do all this stuff (in camp) and a guy could win the job and then get out there and struggle. The next guy might just go in and flourish. You just don’t know.”

Of course, this could be nothing but a giant smokescreen, the purpose of which I have not yet divined.  But while I scoffed back in the spring at the possibility that Richt would allow the quarterback battle to encroach into the regular season, I have to admit I’m less certain of that today.  I guess we’ll have to wait and see what transpires over the next few weeks of preseason practice.

I just hope none of ’em rides a scooter.

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Filed under Georgia Football

In Georgia’s secondary, youth will be served.

Believe it or not, Devin Bowman is the only senior member of the secondary Jeremy Pruitt is coaching this season.

Man, that’s some serious attrition Pruitt’s working his way through.

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Filed under Georgia Football

The NCAA gets its stay.

And, yeah, it’s a pretty big deal.

An appellate court granted a stay on Friday of a federal judge’s ruling last year that N.C.A.A. rules preventing athletes from making money from college sports broadcasts and video games violated antitrust law.

The stay, in the so-called O’Bannon case, is at least a temporary reprieve for the N.C.A.A. and its decades-old rules barring payments to athletes. Without it, the association would have faced a new reality on Saturday in which colleges theoretically could have offered recruits unregulated money, or the association could have set a cap on such compensation.

There is no timetable for a ruling from the appellate court, a three-judge panel of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, but the judges specifically noted that the stay was not an indication of how they might ultimately decide the case.

Eh, maybe not, but it’s a decent indication that Judge Wilken’s ruling may not stand in its entirety.

Michael Hausfeld, a lawyer representing a class of current and former basketball and football players against the N.C.A.A. and its member institutions, had hoped for a different outcome, one that would have allowed colleges to compensate players immediately.

“I’m disappointed,” he said. “I would have liked to see a decision. Now we’ll wait some more.”

The sides argued the case in March in front of the Ninth Circuit, with the N.C.A.A. contending that a ruling for the players would professionalize its amateur athletes and hurt its business model. The association requested the stay this month.

“It’s hard to imagine a situation where they grant the stay and then affirm the ruling,” Hausfeld said in a recent interview, although on Friday he added, “A decision is still coming, and this is not the end.”

Indeed, the stay could mean the court is trying to reach consensus or work through complicated issues.

“If anything, the stay is a recognition of the complexity of the case and unscrambling the egg if the schools are allowed to offer the money,” said Gabe Feldman, the director of the sports law program at the Tulane University Law School.

The odds on this case going to the Supreme Court have become a lot more likely.

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Filed under See You In Court, The NCAA

“We don’t even try to focus on the negative.”

This is a nice story about Georgia’s quiet offseason – “Georgia hasn’t registered a single point in the latest Fulmer Cup Standings…” – but I gotta tell you, if things blow up in the next month, I’m blaming Weiszer for the jinx.

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Filed under Georgia Football