Oregon Ducks Football: Does Chip Kelly Need to Suspend Darron Thomas?

Alex Shoemaker@https://twitter.com/#!/MrAlexShoemakerAnalyst IIAugust 16, 2011

CORVALLIS, OR - DECEMBER 04:  Darron Thomas #1 of the Oregon Ducks celebrates the 37-20 victory over the Oregon State Beavers during the 114th Civil War on December 4, 2010 at the Reser Stadium in Corvallis, Oregon.  (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images

This video is what is causing all of the buzz.

Recently it was revealed that starting quarterback Darron Thomas was a passenger in the car driven by Cliff Harris, which resulted in Harris' eventual suspension. What makes this such a big story is that not only was Darron Thomas in the car, but officers reported marijuana was present. Whether or not Darron had been smoking himself is unknown. But this is not the first time Darron was in a car he probably should not have been in.

For those who haven’t been following the story of Cliff Harris’ suspension this past off-season, here is a quick review of the situation.

On June 12, 2011, Cliff Harris and three other passengers (Darron Thomas) were pulled over at approximately 4:30 am for driving 118 MPH down I-5 between Portland and Eugene. Harris, when asked to hand over his license, revealed that he had a suspended one, and was driving a car his girlfriend (a University of Oregon employee) had let him use. Cliff had been a part of multiple off the field issues, had totaled thousands of dollars of tickets and was suspended by the head coach indefinitely.

In 2008, as a freshman, Darron was involved in a high-speed crash that sent several people to the hospital. Current senior Eddie Pleasant was the driver of the car, as the players were racing with another car. Thomas, Pleasant and the other players involved were punished by then head coach Mike Bellotti.

Two years later, Thomas was involved in another incident in which weed was present. Quarterback Jeremiah Masoli was driving in Springfield, OR with Thomas when their car was pulled over for failing to stop when leaving a driveway. Masoli was in the process of serving a one-year suspension, and was consequently released from the football program. Thomas was handed no punishment.

Which brings us back to Darron Thomas’ most recent run in. After an ESPN story in which Thomas’ mother said she was disappointed with her son’s choices and that he had learned from his mistakes came out, it appeared Thomas had learned his lesson. But apparently he has not.

These three issues bring up the question, should Darron Thomas be available for the opening game against LSU? I find it hard to believe that if the Ducks were playing New Mexico, that this would even be a question. So should Chip Kelly suspend Darron Thomas like Cliff Harris? Is three offenses too many to let slide? You tell me. Comment below if you think it’s time he be punished, or if you think Chip should let the star quarterback slide with another warning.