My apologies for not writing anything until now, on a quick personal note, I just got married this past weekend and have been busy with those preparations.
Now onto the reason for this article.
So it has been announced that UGA NT Kwame Geathers and DB Shawn Williams will be suspended the first half of the Georgia/Florida game on October 29th. Those of you who may not be familiar with what happened this past weekend, here's a quick recap:
During the third quarter Shawn Williams was flagged for a personal foul for an unsportsmanlike hit where he targeted a defenseless player.
In the fourth quarter Kwame Geathers was flagged for throwing a punch at Vanderbilt player Stewart after a late hit to Geathers' knee.
All three players received a two quarter suspension for the next game. The problem is that while these suspensions are warranted, we're seeing a clear and blatant lack of consistency on the part of the SEC and it's officiating body when it comes to player's actions on the field during the games.
UGA fans, and many of the other teams for that matter, do not need to be reminded of the incredibly dirty playing of Nick Fairly last year. Was he ever suspended? No. Not a thing from the SEC office. And why should there be? Auburn was riding high in the SEC, they were undefeated and were looking to be unstoppable at that point. So why should the SEC get involved in that and possibly upset the continued dominance of the South Eastern Conference?
Then what about the Brandon Spikes eye gouging incident in the 2009 GA/FLA game? Let's not even go there.
What this is showing me, and I think many others will agree, is that if you're on top, the team looking to be leading the way towards more championships, the people in charge are more than willing to turn a blind eye towards some dirty playing. All that matters is championship and money.
Vanderbilt's Stewart could have ended Geathers' career with that clip, and it's a half game suspension against a non-Conference opponent? Geathers reacts and gets hit with a half game against a major opponent.
I'm not saying that he shouldn't have been suspended, in fact, his punishment fits the crime and is fair and warranted. But Williams and Stewart? How many blatant late hits were done by Auburn last year and nothing? I'm just not seeing a consistent enforcement of rules and punishments from this conference.
In my opinion it should be no suspension for Williams, Geathers, or Stewart, since this precedent has been established in previous years that these things are just fine and can be dealt with in-game by officials through flags, ejections, etc. It's been done before, it's what's usually done, why change now?
OR, Geathers gets his half game, Williams gets a game, and Stewart gets two. Why should Stewart get more? I think in all honesty to teach a new Vanderbilt coaching staff not to cheer on your player after such a blatant hit.
And then the coaches? Where to start? There's probably going to be fines, formal apologies, etc. from all the coaches. But here's my problem: Franklin, as the HC of an opposing team has absolutely no right to discipline a player of the opposing team. I don't care if the players were "rubbing it in [your] faces" after the game.
It was a hard fought game, a tough one, and the adrenaline and emotions were high. Dancing on the V was uncalled for, but you let the coaches of the opposing team know and let them deal with it, if they will. You do not take it upon yourself to yell at those players.
As for Coach Grantham, yes he deserves a reprimand for the way he handled the situation with Coach Franklin, but not for sticking up for his players. If you watch the video of the exchange after the game, CTG was walking across the field when he saw Franklin yelling and pointing at what is believed to be Williams and then got involved in the altercation.
This was a sad outcome from a great game on both sides and just further proof that if you're not the one on top, you'll be punished while everyone else gets away with it.
What do you all think?