Category Archives: Crime and Punishment

Once again, the Georgia Way is under attack.

You wonder how long everyone in Butts-Mehre can stick to Michael Adams’ legacy drug policy when current trends are turning against it.

At least one-third of the Power Five conference schools are not punishing athletes as harshly as they were 10 years ago for testing positive for marijuana and other so-called recreational drugs, according to an investigation by The Associated Press.

The NCAA last year cut in half the penalty for athletes who fail screenings for substances like marijuana at its championship events…

The AP found that some of the nation’s biggest universities, from Oregon to Auburn, have already eased their punishments as society’s views on marijuana use have changed. Marijuana use among U.S. adults has doubled over a decade, according to government surveys, and recreational use is now legal in four states.

How fast is this running away from the crusaders in Athens?  This fast:

The NCAA has been randomly testing athletes at its championship events and football bowl games for performance enhancing and recreational drugs since 1986. In 2014, the penalty for testing positive at either of those events for a recreational drug such as marijuana was reduced from a suspension of one year to six months.

Now NCAA chief medical officer Dr. Brian Hainline wants to end NCAA testing for recreational drugs.

Hainline said the NCAA should focus on catching cheaters who gain a competitive advantage by using performance-enhancing drugs…

Man, if you’ve lost the NCAA on being vindictive, you’re really out there on a limb.

Of course, you’ve still got that smug feeling of moral superiority to keep you warm at night, don’t you?  Um, well…

“If we’re going to test at championship events for things that are illegal, then we shouldn’t just test for pot,” Hainline said. “If there are any kids under the age of 18 smoking cigarettes, we should test for that. We certainly should be testing for alcohol for everyone under the age of 21. Then we ask ourselves, `Where does the moral authority stop?’ I’m all for moral authority as long as there is a philosophical consistency to it.”

Philosophical consistency in college athletics?  BWAHAHAHAHAHA!!!  Oh wait… you were serious about that?

If Georgia announces its annual intention to make an issue out of a uniform drug policy for the conference when the SEC has its spring meeting next year, I hope somebody invites Dr. Hainline to speak there.

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UPDATE:  You can find a school-by-school breakdown of drug policies here.

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Filed under Crime and Punishment, Georgia Football, The NCAA

Kirby Smart gets his first taste of the Georgia Way.

Mark Richt departs and things immediately go to pot.

Literally.

UGA freshman defensive end Chauncey Rivers was arrested for possession of marijuana.

According to an Athens-Clarke County jail booking report, Rivers was arrested at 1:12 a.m. Saturday morning for possession of one ounce or less of marijuana, which is a misdemeanor. His bond has been set at $1,000. As of 2:40 a.m., Rivers was listed as “currently incarcerated,” according to jail records.

Rivers was arrested on Nov. 4 for misdemeanor possession of marijuana after admitting to smoking in a UGA campus parking lot with teammate Natrez Patrick. The two Bulldogs were suspended for the Kentucky game on Nov. 7.

Since that’s Rivers’ second offense – in less than two months! – he should be gone for a while.

According to the UGA student-athlete handbook, Rivers is subjected to a suspension of “no less than 30 percent of the total sport season.”

That would be four games, if you’re counting.  That’s not the way things worked in Tuscaloosa.

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Filed under Crime and Punishment, Georgia Football

This is how plausible deniability works, y’all.

Jimbo Fisher said in deposition testimony that he was not aware of FSU’s policy about sexual battery.

Instead, he relied on procedure.

“I was to report to my superior,” Fisher said.
Boy, it’s a good thing head coaches aren’t known for being control freaks, right?  Um, wait…

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Filed under ACC Football, Crime and Punishment

The ol’ reliable

Forget it, Jake.  It’s Athens.

Georgia linebacker Natrez Patrick was booked by the Athens-Clarke County police at 2:23 a.m. on Wednesday morning for misdemeanor possession of marijuana according to the official bookings of the ACC jail. Fellow freshman and defensive lineman Chauncey Rivers was also booked by ACC on the same charge just 21 minutes later at 2:44 a.m. Both are still listed as in custody at this time.

It’s good to see there are always some things you can count on.

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UPDATE:   Yadda, yadda, yadda“and I’m extremely disappointed.”

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Filed under Crime and Punishment, Georgia Football

Huntley Johnson never sleeps.

Oh, look.  Another Gator arrested.

Florida freshman defensive back Deiondre Porter has been suspended indefinitely following his arrest on four felony charges.

Porter, one of the team’s top special teams players, was arrested Wednesday on aggravated assault charges.

The Gators announced his suspension on Twitter, and coach Jim McElwain addressed it on the Southeastern Conference coaches call.

“He’s no longer with the football team,” McElwain said. “He’s suspended indefinitely for obviously a choice. It’s his choice not to be with us. I’m sure you’ll read about it soon enough. It’s one of those things that we don’t obviously condone. Like I said, it was his choice.”

That is some pretty tough language from his coach there.  Let’s see how tough things get if Johnson works his usual magic with the Gainesville judicial system.

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Filed under Crime and Punishment, Gators Gators

It’s a legal matter, baby.

I didn’t blog about the Isaiah McKenzie story yesterday because I was swamped at work, but also because of this:

According to an Athens-Clarke County police incident report, McKenzie is accused of “making terroristic threats” to a female complainant at the Chili’s restaurant on Alps Road at 10:28 p.m. Monday night. A woman named Maya Labat claims McKenzie told her “he was going to call some friends and they were going to come out and he was going to kill her,” according to the report.

However, officers interviewed witnesses at the scene, saw no reason to arrest McKenzie and no charges were filed.

I mean, damn, if the A-CC PoPos can’t be moved to arrest a Georgia football player, how big a deal could it be?

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Filed under Crime and Punishment

“I’m not sorry for giving him an opportunity. I’m sorry for the way things worked out.”

The sausage making that went into Nick Saban’s decision – and let’s not get too cute here, it was Saban’s decision – to admit Jonathan Taylor to Alabama after his dismissal at Georgia ain’t pretty.

Taylor’s path to the University of Alabama and Nick Saban’s team is well-known: Saban recruited him and put him on the team but dismissed him after another domestic violence police report was made. Under national media scrutiny for signing Taylor in the first place, Alabama athletic director Bill Battle said officials had “thoroughly investigated numerous sources regarding the young man” in addition to talking with Taylor before he enrolled.

Outside the Lines has learned that McGarity was among those Battle had spoken with — in a phone call in which McGarity confirmed details found in the police report. The call occurred just four days after Georgia had taken extraordinary measures to inform Alabama about the case, Outside the Lines has learned. Georgia officials sent photos of the woman’s injuries to University of Alabama police nearly three weeks before Taylor enrolled and also sent copies of two police incident reports involving Taylor. One report contained information not available to the public — contact information for the alleged domestic violence victim and the person who reported the incident to police. Alabama did not reach out to either person, a source told Outside the Lines, nor did it ever reach out to the district attorney presiding over the case.

The photographs sent to Alabama campus police have not been made public because they are part of Taylor’s pending court case. Outside the Lines did not review them, and Georgia officials say that deputy athletic director Williams is the only non-law enforcement official at the school who has seen them.

They were, however, “shared with [Alabama campus police] in order for all involved at the decision-making level to see the severity of the injuries involved, and for the nature of the incident to be understood in the hopes of preventing other students from being victimized,” Georgia spokesman Bob Taylor told Outside the Lines.

An Alabama spokesman on Friday said neither Saban nor Battle ever saw the photos.

That’s what you call willful ignorance.

Two things here… one, McGarity spoke on the record about how serious Taylor’s assault was.  (“The police report was very descriptive, there probably wasn’t much of a question that what happened, did happen.”)  I don’t know if that was done out of a sense of propriety or to make sure everyone knows that Georgia wasn’t guilty of its own cover up of Taylor’s transgression here, but it’s worth noting in either case.

Second, it sounds like anyone who was skeptical of Taylor’s girlfriend’s retraction of the charges she filed against him in Tuscaloosa was right to feel that way.

Three days after Taylor’s arrest, however, the girlfriend recanted her story and told police her wounds were self-inflicted. She was arrested on a charge of filing a false police report but, according to court records, on July 7, Taylor pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of criminal mischief as a result of the incident, and her charge was dismissed the same day.

Lt. Kip Hart, assistant commander of the Tuscaloosa Homicide Unit, told Outside the Lines that the woman’s charge was dismissed because she later came back to police and told them her original report was true. “There was evidence to believe the initial story was accurate” Hart said. Court records confirm she ended up cooperating in the case against Taylor, and that’s why the prosecution of Taylor moved forward.

There is something unsettling about all of this.  Perhaps mostly because it’s hard to understanding why Saban’s judgment appears so clouded in pursuing Taylor.  This being Alabama, nothing further will come of it, but it’s interesting to compare what’s happened at Baylor in the wake of the Ukwuachu conviction.

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Filed under Crime and Punishment, Nick Saban Rules