Blog Entry

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

Posted on: October 11, 2011 5:09 pm
Edited on: October 11, 2011 5:27 pm
TAMPA, Fla. – Gary Garcia, the father of former South Carolina quarterback Stephen Garcia, said his son was dismissed from the program Tuesday for “having a couple of beers,” which violated the zero tolerance policy Stephen had agreed to abide by.  

“We have a lot of decisions to make right now,” Gary Garcia told Tuesday afternoon. “We don’t know what his options are yet. We’re trying to absorb everything that’s happened. It’s happened so quickly.”

Gary Garcia was with his son in Columbia, S.C., helping Stephen pack to return to their hometown of Tampa, Fla. Garcia graduated in May.

“Obviously, he’s responsible for his own actions, which we’ve told him from the beginning,” Gary Garcia told The Tampa Tribune. “The stuff he did in the beginning, he should’ve known better than that. He should’ve made better decisions. We understand that.

“I don’t hold the university responsible for it. Stephen did it. He should be responsible. You only get so many chances.”

Stephen Garcia had been suspended – and reinstated five times. He told after the Gamecocks’ season opening victory against East Carolina how appreciative he was of getting one final chance.

"Once I was told the conditions (to meet) in order for me to return, I knew I would be able to come back and just get it done,” Garcia said on Sept. 3. “Get back on the team at whatever cost. I don't know where I'd be right now if Coach (Steve) Spurrier, (athletic director) Mr. (Eric) Hyman and President Dr. (Harris) Pastides didn't give me the conditions and allow me one more final chance."

Spurrier said he was “saddened this has occurred.”

“We all feel like we’ve given Stephen numerous opportunities to be a student-athlete here at South Carolina,” Spurrier said in a statement. “Obviously, he has chosen not to follow the guidelines of his reinstatement contract. We wish him the best.”

Gary Garcia said his son had agreed to a zero tolerance to return to the team in the summer.

“I don’t know many college kids who can handle zero tolerance, but those were the choices we had,” Gary Garcia said. “You could second-guess yourself. Should he have even come back here? Go somewhere else?

"He made a commitment to South Carolina and his teammates. He wanted to win a championship. He had a chance this year. God works in mysterious ways. I don’t know what’s ahead for him, but it will be something.”

Gary Garcia said it was almost a sense of relief for his son and the chance for a fresh start. He said his son does not have an alcohol problem.

“I don’t think he has to get anything squared away,” Gary Garcia told the Tribune. “He has been doing well. I don’t think he’s a loose cannon. He’s a wannabe college student who has a lot of eyes on him.

“To start off like he started (with numerous suspensions) was not on level ground. He was below the ground. At home, he’ll be a lot more conscientious. The players and coaches here (at South Carolina), they’ve called and texted him. They just think he’s a college kid. Leave him alone. Everything he does gets reported. He’s an SEC quarterback. He’s not Tim Tebow. But there’s only one Tim Tebow, I know.”

Gary Garcia said he plans to eventually contact former Tampa Bay Bucs coach Jon Gruden and others for advice on what options his son has as far as playing professionally. But he said he’s more concerned about his son returning home to Tampa.

"At the end of the day, we’re going to keep our heads up," Gary Garcia said. "He’s going to do something good. Something good will come out of this. God has a plan for him. We don’t know yet, but it’s going to be something special."


Since: Feb 23, 2009
Posted on: October 12, 2011 12:45 pm

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

here's the bottom line, he is 21 and can drink as much as he wants , if u think an nfl team wont take a look ur crazy. u guys bend over backwards to blow spurrier for throwing him off and blame the father for his problems yet spurriers the guy who gave him all those chances.  say what you will about the guy but he'll be far better of then most of us.  and to fanarama or whatever ur name is, if u could read you would know he is a 5th year senior, graduated in may and has a degree. so go back to cutting the way half you guys killing him and his dad, i bet you all tried to get vick for ur fantasy fb team ...yea he's a model citizen root for him

Since: Jun 25, 2008
Posted on: October 12, 2011 12:23 pm

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

I think the point of the policy is that it isn't that he had a beer and got kicked off the team. People don't always get punished solely for the act commited, but for continuing in a long line of other acts. If you have commited a crime in the past, you are more likely to get a severe punishment for a 2nd, 3rd, etc. offense. It's not always that the later acts were any worse then the earlier ones, it is that they continue a pattern.

And it doesn't matter what age he is, a school as well as other organizations can set any guidelines they want as long as they do not break the law. I am over 21 and can drink as much as I want, but if I have one beer at work I can be fired. There are plenty of things that you can legally do that can break a contract, even if the act itself has no connection to poorly fulfilling that contract.

We all know though, that if he was a Heisman contender that there would probably have been more leway.  

Since: Oct 12, 2011
Posted on: October 12, 2011 11:30 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

Whoops! Screwed up that post! 
My  response was to  and I was agreeing that he was "Smack On!" with his comment regarding the father. The kid's (adult) bad enough without having a father who is sugar coating everything in the young man's life. 

Since: Oct 12, 2011
Posted on: October 12, 2011 11:20 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

Smack on!

Since: Feb 26, 2009
Posted on: October 12, 2011 11:17 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

Dude got his degree . He was a man who should be allowed to live life like any campus adult....but I don't have a problem with him being dismissed . He did more than have a couple of beers . If that was the case I really doubt he would have gotten booted....It was the failed drug test that got him and for that reason it was the right call . Garcia had failed other drug tests and had been arrested in the past . He already has his degree . There is no sense in suspending him . He was leaving campus in roughly 10 weeks anyway . That would lead me to believe he does have a problem no matter how mild or really wasn't fully committed to the program . Its a shame . Time for both to move on .

Since: Nov 19, 2008
Posted on: October 12, 2011 11:00 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

I, for one, applaud the father for not trying to sugar coat his sons mistakes, nor trying to put the blame on the coaches or University.......*cough*cough.....C

raig James.........

Since: Sep 6, 2006
Posted on: October 12, 2011 10:54 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

That said, why even bother giving a second chance if its terms must be so rigid that it can be lost just by having 2 beers (by a college grad)?

This seems pretty simple. The reason for zero tolerance policies is to make it so there's NO CHANCE of an action (in this case, drinking) happening. In Garcia's case, the point of a zero tolerance policy is to keep him from drinking AT ALL.  I'm sure the logic is, one beer leads to 5, which leads to 20.  His age is irrelevant.  His drinking had gotten him in trouble and hurt his team in the past, so this was SC's way of keeping it from happening again.

He violated it; he should not be surprised that he's now gone.

Also, it wasn't his 2nd chance. It appears it was his 5th.    

Since: Nov 19, 2010
Posted on: October 12, 2011 10:50 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

He agreed to the terms and conditions and violated them. He knew the consequence of violating his agreement. One beer or 100 beers, it is still a violation of a contract he agreed too as an adult. He got justice. He violated the agreement and as a stated consequence in the agreement was dismissal. That is how life is supposed to be. You agree to something and you live up to it or accept the consequence of your actions or inactions.

Since: Feb 18, 2008
Posted on: October 12, 2011 10:26 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

It reads that the guy has already earned his degree, so it stands to reason that he's >21.  It also said he violated his second chance by having 2 beers.  That said, why even bother giving a second chance if its terms must be so rigid that it can be lost just by having 2 beers (by a college grad)?

Since: May 31, 2007
Posted on: October 12, 2011 10:02 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

I must admit, five suspensions and returns is a lot more chances than most people would get.

I appreciate that dad isn't sitting there blaming the school:  he admits the kid had plenty of opportunity and didn't get it done.  Often times you hear the parents swoop in, making excuses for their kids, and it becomes clear that they enabled the behavior by coddling/protecting/wussifying them all their lives.  But honestly with all of those chances and the way dad sounds... I'm inclined to think that Garcia is just one of those kids who can't seem to learn from his mistakes.  Whether it's because he is too arrogant/entitled to care, wasn't properly taught how to deal with life, has a serious issue, or just isn't that bright I don't know.  Either way, I hope this serves as the wake-up call he clearly needs to get his head on straight.

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