Posted on: June 27, 2011 12:11 pm
Edited on: June 27, 2011 2:50 pm
Posted by Jerry Hinnen
Russell Wilson is set to has announced his decision today, but even if he had chosen Auburn, he would have been far from the only ripple on the SEC's current "transfer market."
Because two former five-star recruits announced this past weekend that they would be looking for new homes outside their current residences in the SEC East. One of them is former Georgia offensive line signee Brent Benedict, who will be leaving the Bulldog program for the ubiquitous "personal reasons." The other is defensive end Chris Martin, who transferred to Florida last year after signing with Cal in spring of 2010. But after redshirting last fall, Martin will leave Gainesville without having played a down for the Gators, either, and will reportedly be looking for a transfer destination closer to his Aurora, Colo. hometown.
The good news for Will Muschamp and Co. is that thanks to the bounty of riches from that loaded 2010 Gator class, Martin might not be missed much. With Ronald Powell, Sharrif Floyd and their friends around, the Florida line should be able to shrug off the loss, even of a player who was viewed by nearly every recruitnik in the country as one of the 2010 class's best prospects at any position.
That's not the case in Athens, though, where the Dawg offensive line was already thin and has just gotten thinner. A redshirt freshman who had dominated at the high school level before a senior-year knee injury, Benedict was expected to land on the Georgia two-deep at right guard in 2011 with an eye towards starting in 2012.
But according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, "differences over how much and what kind of off-season training he should be doing" arose between Benedict and the Georgia staff, and he elected to move on.
Even after the loss of Benedict (and fellow transferee A.J. Harmon, and ACL victim Trinton Sturdivant), the Bulldogs have enough talent and experience to weather the storm on their depth chart -- if their projected starting lineup can stay healthy and productive. But after the past few seasons of underachievement up front, that's a big "if," and one on which the fate of the SEC East might rest.
Posted on: April 25, 2011 10:55 am
Posted by Jerry Hinnen
Will Muschamp may have an image problem on his hands.
His Florida team has already been embarrassed by cornerback Janoris Jenkins' pair of marijuana-related arrests this offseason, the most recent coming just this past weekend. And now the Palm Bech Post has reported that it's not just Jenkins that's been caught by law enforcement with pot this spring; redshirt freshman defensive end Chris Martin and sophomore reserve linebacker Kedric Johnson were both arrested on possession charges this past January. The details:
The Gainesville Police Department arrested Martin, who is expected to compete for a starting job at defensive end or linebacker this summer, on Jan. 29 after officers detected the scent of the drug coming from a vehicle. Martin was in the car and revealed approximately two grams of cannabis when the police confronted him, the report said.Combined with Jenkins' missteps, that makes four marijuana-related arrests for the Gators in 2011 alone.
At a program with a better track record, these incidents might be easily brushed off. But Florida under Urban Meyer became (in)famous for its string of petty (and not-so-petty) arrests, a record Muschamp has promised to change with an emphasis on the "Florida Way."
Though Muschamp will ultimately be judged on wins and losses and virtually nothing else -- for all the griping about the Gators' arrest record under Meyer, his two national championships meant he could have continued in Gainesville almost indefinitely had he not retired -- the "Florida Way" talk will quickly become a punchline if his Gators can't stay out of headlines with "marijuana" in them.
It's early and Muschamp deserves the benefit of the doubt for now -- Martin's and Johnson's arrests occurred within days of his hire -- but it's also a problem the new Gator head honcho will need to nip in the bud* for the sake of his program's already-dicey image.
*Yes, pun intended.
Posted on: March 11, 2011 3:10 pm
Posted by Adam Jacobi
Earlier today, Florida fans were jarred by an announcement on the Facebook page of Gator LB Chris Martin that he had been booted from the football team. That would indeed be an unexpected and unwelcome development for Martin, since he was one of the top-rated OLB recruits in the nation and had transferred to the Gators from California just last summer.
But alas, the joke is on people who took Martin at his word, because he posted shortly thereafter that he was only making an early April Fool's joke (a fact later confirmed by sources in the football team), so we're all the fools here, and certainly not Martin for wasting everybody's time and attention.
Unfortunately, this is just the latest iteration in a pattern of unacceptable behavior from people named Chris Martin. Here's a brief list of recent transgressions against humanity, ranked in order of intolerability:
Shameful, Chrises Martins of the world. Simply shameful.