Stephen Garcia Makes Me Sick and It's Steve Spurrier's Fault

Nathan BitnerSenior Analyst IJanuary 1, 2009

As you can probably gather from the headline, this is purely an opinion piece, and I have a very strong opinion after suffering through another disappointing South Carolina season and watching an embarrassing bowl performance against the Iowa Hawkeyes.

I am a Gamecock fan through marriage, but I have actually become quite attached over the years.

Wholesale changes are needed, and it starts at the top. No, I am not calling for Spurrier's head. But, I would like to smack him upside his head for letting Stephen Garcia "lead" this team in the manner that he does.

Garcia has missed practices due to academic ineligibility, and he's missed his receivers as if they're running around in invisible uniforms. He's been arrested more than once since arriving on campus, and it's becoming pretty obvious that he's better at partying than he is at studying game film.

Maybe if the South Carolina coaching staff let him watch the game film with a Budweiser in hand and sprinkled in a few scantily-clad women, Garcia would be more willing to put in the time necessary to be a successful Division-I quarterback.

Garcia is well-known for being lackadaisical in preparation, so why does Spurrier tolerate it? If there's anything that drives the Ol' Ballcoach crazy, it's poor QB play. I think the answer is fairly simple. He doesn't have anything better to replace him with. 

During the game against Florida, Spurrier answered a sideline reporter's question with, "You saw [the first half]. Who would you play?"

Sorry, Steve, but that just doesn't cut it. If this is the best you've got, then he needs a 7 PM curfew and a nanny. He needs a cot set up in the film room and a lock put on his dorm room.

I spent about five years in the Army, and I know how we would have resolved it.  Stephen Garcia would be studying plenty of game film; I can guarantee you that. He'd either get smarter or a lot stronger, as our superiors used to tell us.

He'd be sleeping in the locker room or in a pup tent on the practice field. He'd have a football or two duct taped to his hands so that he understood the importance of avoiding turnovers. And he'd be studying, football and academics.

Spurrier is known for being a bit "easy" on players (off the field, anyway). I think it's time to rethink that policy, especially when it comes to Stephen Garcia.  He's not mature enough to handle the freedom.

And I'm not mature enough to continue tolerating these losses.