Okay, despite what some of my readers might think of me right now, I have not disappeared or decided to quit posting semi-intelligent, mostly factual, completely from-the-hip, prose about the Georgia Bulldogs football team. On the contrary, I’ve just found myself lacking in the motivation department thanks in large measure to my kid’s approaching spring break and all this damned pretty Georgia weather.
That said, it would be impossible for me to not comment on this most recent batch of “oh, good grief” that has afflicted the Georgia Bulldogs’ chances of repeating as SEC East Champs in 2012—something about some laced brownies and being really hungry one morning in Panama City last week…ringing any bells?
Well, after having better than 12-hours to let this marinate, I’ve come to one conclusion…this sucks for any fan who gives two GATA’s about the Georgia Bulldogs football program.
However, within that conclusion I’ve managed to realize that many of those same fans are determined to find a way to point the finger of blame for this situation everywhere but where it needs to be pointed; at the AD for allowing the players to be tested after spring break, at the coaches for not being tougher on the players, at the university president for being, well, named Michael Adams (which I can’t really blame them for seeing as how I have my own opinions about him), and the recently contract extended Mark Richt for continuing to be “useless” and “incompetent” as a disciplinarian, etc., etc.
Give me a break.
I don’t give a flip about it being college or these guys being “kids”, that’s no excuse for them not being smart about the decisions they make when they’re off-campus, unsupervised, and surrounded by drugs and alcohol—and any idea that Georgia’s coaching staff or AD should have been able to keep them from making, being punished, or getting caught for said decisions—in this age of social media and the drug testing of NCAA athletes—is asinine at best. And, unless the Georgia coaching staff is willing to assign personal chaperones to go along with the 19-22 year old football players they’re depending on for their coaching lives, there was no way they could have kept this incident from happening.
Now, I am every bit as disappointed in the decision-making of the players involved, but I’m not about to hold Richt, Grantham or any other paid member of the athletic department responsible for what these young men did during an unchecked week at the beach.
You can do so if you wish, but even my six-year old knows right from wrong so I would hope a football player, on scholarship, with NFL aspirations, would know it too. And drugs, specifically, ranks right up there with stuff you don’t do. Oh and you can save me the “but marijuana ain’t really bad…” stuff because, last I checked, marijuana is still essentially illegal (unless it’s prescribed for medicinal purposes) despite it’s glorification in music, movies, and television. So, if you get caught selling it, you go to jail, if you get caught using it, you go to jail or get charged. If you get caught around it, even as an innocent bystander, you can still be punished or admonished by someone of authority if they can prove you were there of your own volition.
These are big boys, folks, and they knew what was at stake and yet they still opted to roll the dice.
Even more than that though, just in case you’re still riding the blame train minus the players, riddle me this: there are 75+ players listed on Georgia’s spring roster. Of that 75+, only four were misguided enough to put themselves in questionable situations (Branden Smith, Alec Ogletree and Bacarri Rambo) and have the utter misfortune of being caught redhanded. And while a few more players are currently rumored to be on their way to being added to that number, it still begs the question—what were the other 70 or so guys doing to NOT get into trouble?