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*** Obviously, the big story everyone was chasing today dealt with A.J. Green. I spent more time working the phones for that one than compiling updates for the site, but hey, there should more coverage to snack on from Athens in the next few days because of it.
A few years covering SEC football and various NCAA matters has taught me this: Do not ever, ever, ever assume or speculate anything when it comes to the NCAA. While it's likely Georgia will receive an NCAA RULING soon on Green, I think it's premature to say for sure that he will be CLEARED to play against South Carolina. I know Dawgs fans may not want to hear that, but past precedent in NCAA cases teaches that it is very rare for a player to miss a first game and suddenly have the suspension announced as time already served. Usually the punishment is issued well before a player actually returns -- if he has already missed a game.
Now, I just got off the boat here in Athens. So maybe past cases aren't a true indication. Maybe this really is different, but I'm telling you, I'll have to see it to believe it.
In terms of punishment, what Green actually did (and the general thinking is this will ultimately prove to be tied to the rumors of a jersey sale) isn't as important as the perceived value of the violation. If reports are true that the nature of Green's transgression was in the range of $1,000 (which I'm not completely sure -- through sources -- that they are), that in itself would probably mean more than a one-game suspension.
The NCAA said that Alabama defensive end Marcell Dareus was actually down to miss four games, but mitigating circumstances (his mother died around the time of the trips to Miami) reduced it to two. Dareus had to make restitution for roughly $1,800.
*** As a side note, a lot was made over the fact that UGA's lawyers are involved. Trust me, that doesn't mean anything. It's standard for schools to use attorneys to communicate with the NCAA. If for no other reason, the fact that it's the law office doing the talking means the correspondence is not subjected to open record laws.
*** Richt expects a dog fight in Columbia. Actually, he said he "would have to imagine another knock-down drag-out." It's a battle of two Top 25 teams as well, since USC entered both polls today.
*** I liked this quote from Richt explaining the mindset of his players: "They know how big this game is. I don’t think they believe that they’ve arrived. They know that we’ve got a lot of things to improve on, though it was a very solid start, I thought.”
*** For Logan Gray to again play quarterback anytime soon, it would take injuries to the top two freshmen. Said Richt: "He's a receiver now."
*** Gray still isn't 100 percent on his ankle injury, but he said it feels a lot better now than it did a week ago.
*** Trinton Sturdivant is expected to play Saturday after missing the opener with a stomach bug.
*** Back off suspension, Alec Ogletree is expected to debut Saturday, though he may have to overcome an ankle injury to do it.
*** Richt again had nice things to say about Carlton Thomas today, but I still think King and Ealey are the top two guys there.
*** Christian Robinson said the defense watched tapes of the Dallas Cowboys (where Todd Grantham coached) to help settle into the new 3-4 defense.
*** Asked about Steve Spurrier, Grantham voiced his admiration by saying, "He won at Duke."
This post was edited by Gentry Estes on 9/7/2010 at 9:33 PM
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