“You are not at Toppers. You are not in your room either. You are in a bush.”

Some headers just write themselves.  But I digress.

You see, the Georgia legislature actually did something sensible.  It passed a law that gave amnesty from arrest in cases where an underage drinker got so sick they needed medical help.

But the legislature didn’t count on one Jimmy Williamson.

And that brings us back to that Friday night in the parking lot in front of Reed Hall. An 18-year-old student is taken away by ambulance. But Officer Park is still ordered to charge her with underage drinking because to qualify for amnesty, he’s told she had to be the one to call for help, instead of her friend.

“Captain’s interpretation made absolutely no sense. I told them it made no sense.” Park said to FOX 5 I-Team reporter Randy Travis.

His supervisors told him they’d have a meeting Monday to consult with local prosecutors and figure out how they should handle amnesty cases. But before his Saturday midnight shift, Park decided on his own to call a judge and two state lawmakers for advice, including the state senator who proposed the underage drinking amnesty law.

“I think initially even law enforcement in Athens was confused,” said state senator Bill Cowsert of Athens.

Senator, you see that as a bug.  Ol’ Jimmy sees that as a feature.

“I’m a police officer. My sgt’s telling me to get an arrest warrant for someone where I know I’m not supposed to. What am I supposed to do?” Park said later.

Park went back to the station and then went home. On Monday, chief Jimmy Williamson called him back in and told the five-year veteran he was fired for calling outsiders on his own to ask about the amnesty law.

“He never came to me about his concerns or confusion about what was going on in shift,” chief Williamson explained.

“Sounds like he was being a lot more liberal with the law than you wanted him to be,” said Randy.

“I don’t have any problem with him questioning. That’s not the issue.”

Park’s personnel file shows an earlier reprimand for going outside the chain of command. As for the amnesty law, Williamson says they were initially unclear about how to handle cases where the caller doesn’t ask for medical assistance… but just reports a drunk person.

Chief: Amnesty doesn’t apply if we are required to get EMS involved.

Randy: So the caller has to use the magic words “I want an ambulance” for the amnesty to apply in that situation?

Chief: I think when it says seeking medical help, that’s kind of how we’re looking at it.

Well, that’s nice.  If not consistent.

Up until that Tennessee game last fall, UGA police had not granted amnesty for a single underage drinking case. Compare that number… zero… to how many amnesty cases have happened since Park’s firing: 38 through the end of February, including those two cases that originally got him in so much trouble on the Tennessee game weekend. Those students were ultimately not charged.

Maybe Jimmy’s trying to prove he’s not out to get just student-athletes.


Filed under Crime and Punishment, Georgia Football

Crappy game, man.

You might think that going to the bathroom  during a national broadcast might be a tad embarrassing.  But you don’t wear the orange and blue.

But don’t worry! While this kind of incident on national television might ruin some people for eternity, Lane has had quite the opposite reaction.

“It was the best thing that could have happened,” said Lane, via Jacksonville.com‘s Richard Johnson. “It got a lot of attention and just put me in a place where I was out there publicly and people knew who I was. I really didn’t get a lot of grief from it. A lot of people were really more focused on how well I did in the game more than anything. I feel like it was that way because I embraced it.”

Honestly, I got nothing to add to that.


Filed under Gators, Gators...

The Ohio State Way?

Does what Braxton Miller did the other day rise to the level of an NCAA violation?

I have no idea.

With Ohio State’s announcement that the school “is looking into the situation”, do you think it’ll handle what’s happened differently than Georgia, if presented with a similar problem, would?

I have an idea.


Filed under Georgia Football, The NCAA

“However, I’d be lying if I said that the concussion thing doesn’t scare me a little.”

How many of these does it take to turn an outlier into a trend?  And why aren’t they listening to Urban Meyer?


Filed under The Body Is A Temple

Keep your chin up, kid.

University of Alabama Chancellor Robert Witt says that even though mistakes were made, embattled UAB President Ray Watts still has his undying support.

“There is no doubt that our governing structure and the synergies of UA, UAB and UAH are a point of tremendous pride for Alabama and a model for the nation.  It is extremely unfortunate that a vocal few would choose to disagree.”

And after reading the complete PR memo that laid out the plans to shut down UAB’s football program, I can see why Witt has his back.  After all, if college is about preparing students to deal with the real world, how much more of an education could UAB’s student-athletes get than this touching send off?

Make History, Show Your Heart: This will be a difficult transition, but it will demonstrate your ability to deal with hard times and show heart, work ethic, loyalty, and dedication. These are traits to be proud of and this is a story you will be able to share and benefit from in every job interview for the rest of your life. Take this opportunity to prove your ability to deal with a difficult situation and to help others through the same — something employers look for.

Yeah, making sure that somebody you interview for a job hire has the experience of suffering through a layoff in the form of a D-1 college football program being closed is the kind of thing 21st-century employers are seeking out in droves.  Especially in Alabama.

A model for the nation, indeed.


Filed under It's All Just Made Up And Flagellant, Life After Football

The quarterback derby: “We’re starting from the ground up.”

Don’t know if you caught any of the ‘Net buzz from the past couple of days, but it was feverishly reported in several quarters by folks who aren’t in the know that Jacob Park has practiced with the Ones.  Whoa, dude… you know what that must mean!

Turns out, it’s even true.  Because Schottenheimer’s rotating all three quarterbacks to get a feel for what he’s got to work with at the position.

This spring, Schottenheimer is rotating the quarterback depth chart every practice, each candidate getting a shot with the first team. For instance, Tuesday it was Ramsey’s turn to run with the first team, but on Thursday he will go to third team, the next day he’ll be second team, and so on.

This produces some challenges, admits Ramsey, as the first-teamers are more skilled and experienced and feature better offensive line blocking. But Schottenheimer wants every quarterback to have that advantage before he makes an evaluation.

That’s got to hurt a little bit for the once-presumed leader at the position.  And it sounds like it does.

“I had just felt comfortable (with the playbook) right when Bobo left,” Ramsey said, smiling ruefully. “I was like, ‘Yes, I got it.’ And sure enough I’m into a new system.”

So, what do Schottenheimer’s options look like so far in the spring?

  • Brice Ramsey.  You’d still have to think that Ramsey’s experience still counts, so I wouldn’t go so far as to say that he doesn’t keep an advantage over the other two candidates.  (Then, again, I’m not a coach who clearly thinks the competition serves a purpose right now.)  But Ramsey’s primary critique of himself is an obvious concern.  “The read, to my footwork, to what the play is, is the biggest thing for me right now.”  He’s had a long way to go from his high school system to running a pro-style attack and there’s still a way to go on his journey.
  • Faton Bauta.  We all know Bauta’s story.  He’s the mobile guy who’s arm strength is the weakest of the three.  Emerson says Bauta doesn’t describe the current situation as a fresh start, just a continuation of competition at the position.  (Although Weiszer quotes Bauta differently.)  If that’s the case, Bauta’s already lost the race with Ramsey once before.  You tell me what this sounds like:  “It’s always an unbiased competition. We’re just out there playing ball. If he’s the better man, all right. But I came in here and was telling myself, ‘Whatever, I’m gonna keep getting better as a quarterback, I’m gonna keep improving, and I’m gonna go as far as I can.’ ”
  • Jacob Park.  The least experienced of the three.  But that’s not what makes me nervous about Park.  This makes me nervous about Park:  “I created a lot of bad habits. I just (played) chuck-and-duck,” Park said.  That’s something straight out of the Joe “I kind of saw Norwood and was like, hmmm, but I decided to throw it anyway…” Cox school of winging it.  It may be entertaining, but I doubt the coaches share that point of view.  At least Park is aware that he has to change his approach:  “Now I’ve actually got to …make reads, sit in the pocket, pick up blitzes, not run around and chuck the ball all the time, make good decisions and throw completions,” Park said. “Now I’m playing actual fundamental football and not backyard football.”  The obvious question is, can he do all that by August?

I can see why Richt maintains a decision about the starter won’t come until preseason practice in late summer.  It will be worth watching G-Day for any indication the three are settling into the position; that may be a more important consideration than their relative physical merits.  As will any indication of leadership skills they show in the time between the end of spring practice and August.  Right now, your guess is as good as mine, or anybody else’s bulletin board speculation.

By the way, you can check out interviews with all three here.


Filed under Georgia Football

A little shot of Dawg porn for your morning

At GTP, we’re fond of two things in the spring, Dawg porn and tea leaf reading.  More on the latter in a sec, but here’s just a taste of the first for you:

Another spring sub-plot is who emerges at receiver to complement veteran Malcolm Mitchell. There are a number of candidates, including some veterans and incoming freshmen, but a returning walk-on has caught the eye of some.

Charlie Hegedus, who redshirted last year after transferring from N.C. State, was mentioned by quarterback Jacob Park when Park was asked who had stood out. The first player Park mentioned was Isaiah McKenzie, the standout kick returner who also plays receiver. Then Park compared McKenzie to Hegedus.

“I think Charlie Hegedus has come on strong,” Park said. “His hands are ridiculous, and his speed is close to Isaiah’s. I mean I saw them two on film (Monday) take off on go routes on opposite sides of the field, and Charlie had him by two steps for 40 yards.”

Hands and speed?  Yeah, I could go for some of that.  Where’s the cold shower?


UPDATE:  Bonus Dawg porn from Jordan Jenkins and Lorenzo Carter!

… Jake Ganus, a senior linebacker who transferred to Georgia from the now-defunct UAB football program, is bound to get substantial playing time.

Jenkins said Ganus has already made a name for himself amongst the Bulldogs.

“I didn’t think Ganus was as fast as he was,” Jenkins said. “When we’re running sprints as linebackers, he’s up there. He’s beat me a couple times, beat Lorenzo [Carter] a couple times. He’s as fast, if not faster, than some of us. He’s not afraid to stand out from the pack.”

Carter said this year will be different for him and the other linebackers because of Ganus and the incoming freshmen.

“It’s gonna be crazy,” Carter said. “I’m not gonna have to play when I’m tired. We’ve got firepower coming off the bench.”​


Filed under Georgia Football