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Tuesday, February 19, 2008

College Football Beat (Police Blotter)

LSU

"LSU quarterback Ryan Perrilloux has been suspended indefinitely for a violation of team rules."

While Mr. Perrilloux was a blue chip prospect when he signed with LSU three years ago, in the past 10 months he's managed to get himself suspended three times, twice indefinitely. The latest infraction is apparently an unspecified violation of team rules but the previous two involved a barroom brawl and trying to enter a casino illegally.

Tennessee

"University of Tennessee junior punter Britton Colquitt has been suspended for the first five games of the season after he was arrested on charges of DUI and leaving the scene of an accident."

Wow! This one gets good! Apparently, in the wake of this latest (yes, latest) alcohol-related arrest, (there have been FIVE) the police in the town of Clinton, TN are scrambling to get the egg off their faces after Mr. Colquitt was allowed to speak to a group of fifth graders graduating from a DARE program on the dangers of drinking and driving! In his public apology, police chief Rick Scarbrough said, "He should have been screened more closely, possibly disclosed the information himself or not been allowed to address our group by the university. I was kind of surprised UT officials let him come." Really? UT official Tiffany Carpenter responded saying, "They (DARE) went directly to the family, we were unaware of the speaking engagement." Understand that Colquitt is a legacy player for UT. He is the latest in a long line of high profile kickers for the Vols. In addition to a five game suspension and stripping his scholarship, UT head coach Phillip Fulmer threw his family under the bus!

Rehab, anyone?

Alabama

"Redshirt freshman defensive tackle Jeremy Elder has been arrested on two counts of first degree robbery. The 6' - 3", 271 pound Elder approached two UA students with a handgun, took twenty six dollars from one student, then fled by foot."

If a 6' - 3", 271 pound man approaches you on the street and demands money, does he really need a gun to get it?? Unfortunately for the not-so-bright Mr. Elder, if he's convicted, the State of Alabama mandates 5 years be tacked on to any offense committed involving use of a gun. (and although we'll probably never find out, it would be interesting to know how many gun control laws were broken in commission of this crime)

(blotter update: there is an extremely enlightening interview/advertisement on www.finebaum.com with Donald Maurice Jackson, prominent Montgomery, AL sports attorney. note to Barrister Jackson: get a new cellphone!)

(blotter update deux: Former Alabama football player turned defense attorney Josh Swords said yesterday (02/20/08) that the gun used by his client was a "pellet gun". Brilliant!)

Tide blue chip signee Julio Jones is apparently off to an auspicious career at the Capstone himself. He's currently testifying in a capital murder trial in Baldwin County, Alabama! Way to go, Julio!

Jacksonville State University

"The Jacksonville State Gamecocks will open spring football practice on Thursday without starting senior quarterback Cedric Johnson and senior defensive end Aaron Jones." Head coach Jack Crowe, seemingly at his wit's end, said the seniors had exhibited a pattern of "unacceptable behavior." "This has nothing to do with the university or any legal authority." (sounds rather Al Gore-ish, you think?) Continuing, "These are strictly team rules. We try to have tolerances with the development of young people but these guys are seniors (translation: grown men) and it's not a one-time incident. We've done everything we can for these two guys, everything we can. We can't help them, they can't help us."

Pretty much says it all, eh?

South Carolina

"USC freshman wide receiver Dion Lecorn was arrested at an apartment complex and charged with marijuana possession."

It's me Dave, open the #%&#$^ door!!!

Why is this happening? One reason why is there's, obviously, individuals who have been allowed to enter these institutions of "higher" learning who have no business being there. Today's focus has been on programs in the South but this is going on around the country in an increasingly alarming rate. Entrance requirements vary, but as a rule "student"/athletes have to meet stardards roughly half what the average student does to gain entry into the institution. And many struggle to do that often failing to qualify and attending junior colleges and prep schools to try and get in at all. (we'll discuss the academic wrestling that goes on to get an athlete academically eligible another day!)

It's sad for some truly trying to improve their lot in life but until entrance requirements are raised to something remotely resembling what the average student has to achieve, this situation will not only continue but get worse.

One must wonder how much more embarrassment these universities will endure so their alumni and boosters can enjoy seeing a positive result on the scoreboard on any given Saturday.

And where, pray tell, is that august governing body, the NCAA, in all this??

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