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South Carolina Football: Stephen Garcia Kicked off the Football Team

COLUMBIA, SC - OCTOBER 01:  Stephen Garcia #5 of the South Carolina Gamecocks and Marcus Lattimore #21 against the Auburn Tigers during their game at Williams-Brice Stadium on October 1, 2011 in Columbia, South Carolina.  (Photo by Streeter Lecka/Getty Images)
Streeter Lecka/Getty Images
Alex RobertsCorrespondent IOctober 11, 2011

It is finally the end of an era.  According to The State, South Carolina QB Stephen Garcia has been kicked off of the football team. 

Athletic Director Eric Hyman released a statement saying that Garcia did not meet the requirements necessary to remain with the team. 

His exact words were:

“Being a student-athlete at the University of South Carolina is a privilege, not a right, and we remind all of our student-athletes that there are consequences for their actions. For Stephen to return to and remain with the football squad this fall, we agreed on several established guidelines. Unfortunately, he has not been able to abide by those guidelines and has therefore forfeited his position on the roster. We wish him the best of luck as he moves forward in life."

This is huge news coming out of Columbia, and interesting timing, given the fact that Garcia was just demoted. 

Steve Spurrier says that he is "saddened" by this news. 

This will now close the book on a tarnished legacy of "what ifs".  Garcia was a great quarterback in spurts, but he was also a basket case of sorts, constantly making huge errors. 

The team lost an apparent leader, but a leader who has not shown up for much of the season. 

This is now Connor Shaw's boat from here on out.  Whether the boat sinks or floats, that will be up to him. 

Wow.

My gut reaction?

I feel sorry for Garcia, even though I can't blame the university.

I feel sorry for him because I think he needs help as a person.  There are some demons hidden in his mind, and I wish him well.  So does the rest of Gamecock nation.  We can't forget his contributions, which were at times spectacular. 

Goodbye, Stephen...and take care.

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