Wednesday, October 29, 2014

NCAA: "Please keep your seat Mr. Gurley"

From confidence to concern to impatience to kicked in the balls.
Georgia star running back Todd Gurley will serve two more games as part of his suspension for accepting more than $3,000 in cash from multiple memorabilia dealers for his autograph, the NCAA announced Wednesday morning.
That means the Bulldogs won’t have Gurley for Saturday’s game against Florida in Jacksonville and next week’s game at Kentucky.
It also almost certainly ends any chances Gurley had to contend for the Heisman Trophy.
The NCAA said Gurley took money from “multiple individuals” for autographed memorabilia and other items over two years.
Gurley must repay a portion of the money to a charity of his choice and complete 40 hours of community service.

He will be eligible to play Nov. 15 against Auburn.
As far as the discrepancy in the UGA and NCAA findings, my guess is the NCAA went with supposition instead of the facts that UGA actually uncovered. But that's just a dangerous and unsubstantiated guess. We'll likely never know the full details. However, UGA was extremely confident. It just turned out to be overly so.

I also don't expect much promptness in the appeal that UGA is making on Gurley's behalf.

There's a lot to process. And my time is short right now. But I'll close this with one thought on Todd Gurley's future. I wouldn't blame him at all if he just said goodbye. Repaying the money is a huge burden for any college athlete, especially a guy that comes from basically nothing and isn't allowed to make money anyway. And the 40 hours community service is just an extra slap in the face (unless he's allowed to do that in place of the monetary restitution).

I don't know Todd Gurley personally. From what little I do know of him I don't believe he's the kind of guy to just walk away from his team. Sure, it'd make all the sense in the world to not risk injury by continuing to play under a conglomeration of bullshit such as the NCAA. He's months from making millions of dollars because he's an exceptional talent.

However, all indications are he's an exceptional teammate as well. There has to be a load on his mind. I don't know of anyone that would blame him if he protected himself professionally at this point in his life since no one around him could do that for him as an amateur.