Grantham should be suspended and fined–now

The University of Georgia, led by President Michael Adams, should run the school’s football program the way it sees best. Dr. Adams delegates that task to his athletics director, Greg McGarity, and his head football coach, Mark Richt.

But if I’m in charge at Georgia, three things would happen today:

 **–Defensive coordinator Todd Grantham will be informed that he’ll be watching Saturday’s game with Idaho State from somewhere other than Sanford Stadium.

**–His wallet will also be considerably lighter because I’m taking a sizable chunk of his $750,000 salary.

**–He would know, in no uncertain terms, that if he ever repeated the behavior in question again and it could be proven beyond a shadow of a doubt, he would be fired on the spot.

It took a couple of days to sort out but the facts are no longer in dispute. Grantham, Georgia’s first-year defensive coordinator, did something in the Georgia-Florida game that is so far over the line that it can’t even be debated. He gave a student-athlete from another school, Florida kicker Chas Henry, the choke sign as Henry was preparing to kick the game winning field goal. Grantham was caught in a screen capture and the image went viral in no time at all.  Jeff Schultz showed you the video where Henry told Tracy Wolfson of CBS that coaches on the Georgia sidelines were telling him that he was going to choke.

Since the first posting of this before 8 a.m. it has come to my attention that there was some taunting going on from both sides. In other words, Grantham was provoked and lost his cool. In other words, he took the bait.

Okay. It has been duly noted. Every story has has two sides. I got it. 

Still, this is totally unacceptable on any level. And I don’t want to hear this “heat of competition” crap from anybody. I don’t care how intense a game is. A coach does not attempt to intimidate a student-athlete from another school. You don’t do it. Period. I don’t care what the other side is doing.

This not about competition or the intensity of the Georgia-Florida rivalry. This is about the adults in charge acting like adults. Georgia fans complain to me all the time that they think Mark Richt’s program doesn’t have enough discipline. If the adults can’t control themselves how in the hell do we expect the players to do it?

Now in fairness I have to say that I have yet to meet Todd Grantham. He may well be a perfectly fine fellow. I hear that he is. His defense is starting to play better. They might play better still if he would concentrate on coaching them instead of trying to harrass players from another team.

This is unacceptable and embarrassing for the University of Georgia. Grantham said Tuesday wants to “move on.” I’m sure he does because he knows he screwed up big time.

But before Mr. Grantham moves on he is going to apologize to Chas Henry and apologize to the University of Florida. Then he’s going to apologize to the University of Georgia for embarrassing the institution on a national stage.

Then he will accept a one-game suspension and a fine and keep his mouth shut.

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Barnhart and Durham: Today we are joined by Ohio State coach Jim Tressel and Virginia Tech coach Frank Beamer, whose Hokies host Georgia Tech on Thursday night. Join us at 10 a.m. on www.790thezone.com.

1,919 comments Add your comment

G8R GRAD

November 3rd, 2010
11:19 am

Thanks, nofairwheather.

Are you Kidding

November 3rd, 2010
11:20 am

WHAT? Tony, I respect your opinions very much, but are you SERIOUS? He gave a choke sign … so what! That kind of stuff goes on on the sidelines among teams every game. So you’re saying this is twice as bad as Brandon Spikes trying to blind Washaun Ealy last year? Oh, wait, it’s only twice as bad because Urban Meyer was so enraged by the criminal actions of Spikes, he suspended him for half of the Vandy game. Fortunately, Spikes, being the man of conscious that he is, suspended himself for the whole game because he felt so bad.

A choke sign is not like saying “time to die, bXXXX” — it’s saying “I sure hope you miss this field goal.” Obviously it had no impact on Henry.

G8R GRAD

November 3rd, 2010
11:20 am

sorry: “nofairweather”

GetAGrip

November 3rd, 2010
11:21 am

Good grief Barnhardt! You’d think Gratham took the UF kicker out at the knees or something based on your column. I am not saying what Grantham did was right but he has addressed it! Maybe not the way you think but move on and waste your time sensationalizing some other story!!!

Ken Pyles

November 3rd, 2010
11:21 am

Software Engineering and Patent Law, BamaDude. How are things going for you?

Mark

November 3rd, 2010
11:21 am

Tony,

Urban Meyer reinstated a guy who had a major impact on the game who threatened to kill his girlfriend. Where is the outrage about that?

Paul Midler

November 3rd, 2010
11:22 am

AJC. Fire Tony Barnhart. Take him out back and tar and feather him. I am so tired of this politicaly correct world. You are an idiot.

G8R GRAD

November 3rd, 2010
11:22 am

katherine:

“Is it possible that Henry might have helped ignite the situation by saying some things to people on the Georgia sideline first? Yes, there have been rumblings of that coming from the Georgia camp. ”

Again, he’s a KID!
Grantham is an ADULT!
See the difference?

:-D

BAMA dude

November 3rd, 2010
11:23 am

Mobile Dawg

November 3rd, 2010
11:18 am
I don’t see the correlation between political correctness, and lack of class.

Bingo! It’s not about whether you hurt the kid’s feelings, it’s about wearing that coaches’ gear and showing young men on both sides what appropriate, mature behavior is.

Tony

November 3rd, 2010
11:23 am

Mark he didnt threaten, he used ghetto slang. Not good, but not threatening either. It is the “rap” culture they live in, talk in, etc. She never felt threatened.

jtdawg

November 3rd, 2010
11:23 am

BAMA dude –

I do understand. And yes I know that decisions could be based on things like these, but I submit that if a decision is based on something like this, I don’t believe the people helping make decisions understand the nature of what their sons do.

Coddling football players into thinking that this should be a major factor in their maturation process is just a little much for my taste.
I just don’t people should be so naive and take it for what it is and put it into perspective.

I’d much rather think your opinions on why UGA sucks as a football program has much more to do with other things than something the media has now wasted 3 days on like this.

I personally think that the discipline in this program is crap, and yes this might be a reflection of that. But I would think the isssues we will have with recruiting will have more to do with that, and the losing, than the heckling by a coach on a particular play in a passionate game

chris

November 3rd, 2010
11:24 am

Tony have you ever played any type of sports other than floating in water. You don’t have a clue. You’ve never experience the heat of battle. Todd Grantham is the only thing UGA has going for them and a no athlete, never a coach, such as yourself wants to hang him. You should be fired!

BAMA dude

November 3rd, 2010
11:24 am

Ken Pyles

November 3rd, 2010
11:21 am
Software Engineering and Patent Law, BamaDude. How are things going for you?

Very well, thanks. Went the business route, myself. I didn’t have the patience to stay in school as long as you did.

Coach

November 3rd, 2010
11:25 am

Barney, you made us proud today, not that I would expect any different. Knowing the difference in right and wrong should not be that difficult. The reactions above are a little scary.

katherine

November 3rd, 2010
11:25 am

G8R GRAD
November 3rd, 2010
11:22 am

katherine:

“Is it possible that Henry might have helped ignite the situation by saying some things to people on the Georgia sideline first? Yes, there have been rumblings of that coming from the Georgia camp. ”

Again, he’s a KID!
Grantham is an ADULT!
See the difference?

I was quoting the espn article……those weren’t my words…….and last time I checked a 20 year old isn’t a kid.

Nancy Pelosi

November 3rd, 2010
11:27 am

DIDNT YOU HEAR ME? I AM THE DEVIL! I told my minion grantham to do the choke sign

Phil

November 3rd, 2010
11:27 am

I’m more disappointed in Richt the way he shrugged it off like it was no big deal. This absolutely proves once and for all that Richt has no discipline on this team from top to bottom. Richt himself is an embarassment to the program maybe more so than that punk Grantham.

Dixie Redcoat Band

November 3rd, 2010
11:27 am

Wow, I bet this has never been done before in college sports! What’s the big deal? gesh….

Sad truth

November 3rd, 2010
11:28 am

He should be fined and suspended for making $750,000 a year and fielding a defense that bad. He makes $750,000 a year not because he’s worth that but because that’s what the job should pay to a competent candidate. If Richt were to have paid him what he was worth, Richt would have been admitting that he settled for less. Thanks to this we have an unqualified dc making $750,000 a year.

Barrack Obama

November 3rd, 2010
11:28 am

Nancy I told you to quit it with that Devil stuff.

jdl2

November 3rd, 2010
11:28 am

Tony,

Good article. Unfortunately, you must be thinking about a time, sometime in the Vince Dooley era, when the UGA coaching staff had class, and Vince actually managed his players AND his coaching staff. (and most of the “fans” were actually UGA grads). Just not the case anymore…and that’s too bad. Not that the Gators are any better.

Barrack Obama

November 3rd, 2010
11:28 am

I have been to all 57 states

katherine

November 3rd, 2010
11:29 am

lol nancy…..now you have more time to sun yourself and look even more like an old leather shoe.

Mobile Dawg

November 3rd, 2010
11:29 am

Appreciate the compliment Mutt Nonsense.

Such hypocrites. We have valliant young men and women fighting overseas to preserve our freedoms. Their duty is about “honor”, “integrity”, “committment at all costs”, and “preservation of our principles” and way of life.

It should be a damn priviledge to coach these kids, to behave in this manner, to this “Dawg” and “American” is not what I represent, or condone. Still Furious and Disgusted over what’s going on in Athens, and across our Country. Guess I’m “Old School” too, and damned proud of it.

Basically our behavior is an indication that we don’t appreciate their sacrifice, and what we have.

chris

November 3rd, 2010
11:29 am

Oh yea, by the way you keep pushing those keys Tony because as you stated “you are not in charge”—paper boy.

Mike Slive

November 3rd, 2010
11:29 am

BAMA dude

November 3rd, 2010
11:29 am

Coddling football players into thinking that this should be a major factor in their maturation process is just a little much for my taste.

Do you have any idea how much time college football players spend together and with their coaching staffs? Many of these parents of “high-risk” (I hate that term) kids absolutely depend on the coaching staff to keep their kids on the straight and narrow. Is that right? I would like to think that I’ve taught my son well enough to handle himself. Of course, in my house Mom stays home and he goes to a great suburban school. Different world than a kid living in the inner city and letting himself in the house after school with single Mom working ’til 8pm. This is a responsibility that really isn’t fair but that football coaches at that level accept as part of the terrirory.

Charles

November 3rd, 2010
11:30 am

Give me a break. This is football, not tidley-winks. Quit trying to overcompensate for being a Georgia grad…this is just not that big a deal.

Mudcatjoe

November 3rd, 2010
11:31 am

You see what type of fans UGA has when they defend their thug defensive coordinator! You are right on the money Tony!

Scott

November 3rd, 2010
11:31 am

You all are a bunch of pc demanding, non-competitive, blow hards – and Tony Blowhard is your ring leader. It is football, where emotion, brutal hitting, and winning are all that matters. Every UGA fan in the stand was screaming their lungs out, but that’s not poor sportsmanship, I guess. Fans in the end zone were waving their arms trying to distract the kicker. But this sap looks over specifically at CTG who is emploring him to choke. Everybody on that sideline is yelling choke.

You bunch of pansies, especially you, Tony. I am damn glad you do not hold any real leadership role in your community, you are simply a drum beater for which I have NO respect.

Nancy Pelosi

November 3rd, 2010
11:31 am

Katherine

Dont play with me… Remmber I am the DEVIL. I may not be the house speaker anymore but I can still pull some strings.. wahahahahahah

gdawginkalamazoo

November 3rd, 2010
11:31 am

Jeff

November 3rd, 2010
11:32 am

Hey Tony…guess what??????? Florida deserves way more than that. Funny no one mentions what “God like” Florida does oh, I forgot…Urban and Timmy were PERFECT. ….what a bunch of crap. get over it..smack is part of the game and NOBODY does it better than Florida. Now everyone is upset because someone has the balls to standup to Florida…..

G8R GRAD

November 3rd, 2010
11:32 am

To all you who are responding with, “yeah, well, at least OUR players aren’t threatening to kill their girlfriends, let me borrow Atlanta Gator’s response:

” . . Let’s not exaggerate or rehash old material. Chris Rainey was not convicted of a “felony.” He pled to a misdemeanor and accepted supervised probation. There was no violence involved, he had no prior history, and he was suspended for half of the season. He’s a good kid who screwed up, but he’s done his time, paid his price, and hopefully learned something about life and how to handle himself from his mistake.”

Now just admit your coach behaved like an idiot, take your loss and your season and go fishing.

NOT REALLY MR ANYTHING

November 3rd, 2010
11:32 am

TONY, Perhaps YOU should be suspended for being such a lame reporter…or whatever you call yourself. YOU, ARE A JOKE TONY.

Frick’in Moron…

TGT

November 3rd, 2010
11:32 am

Much ado about not much. Unseemly at best. Maybe he should have done this instead: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHJ5nA4rFDA&feature=related

Gadawgs810

November 3rd, 2010
11:33 am

Its called PASSION and although that is NOT the way to go about showing it at least we know he has some.

Go Dawgs time to take down AU the champs

Jdawg

November 3rd, 2010
11:33 am

Barnhart, I hear they have an opening at the Gainesville Times !

$750,000 cheerleader

November 3rd, 2010
11:34 am

Enter your comments here

Arno

November 3rd, 2010
11:34 am

Winning is supreme. Class is expendable. Oh well…..

Simon Cowell

November 3rd, 2010
11:34 am

That was the worst excuse I have every seen for a bloody atricle barnhart (brittish accent) You are pathetic (British Accent) You are a low life peice of trash and you dont deserve a bloody blog (brittish Accent)

.

November 3rd, 2010
11:35 am

Well said TONY!
UGA is do as I say not as I do…the coaches and players, fans have a problem with standards and character. Its beginning to stink in Athens.

Tony B is a dum dum

November 3rd, 2010
11:35 am

The Georgia fans who you claim complain to you about “discipline” should quit their whining and let our coaching staff do its job. Just look at the woman-abusing Gator player #3 – Florida fans were OK with that sleaze playing so a hand gesture really seems minute in comparison. I liked what I saw out of Grantham – I want our coaches to hate Florida as much as I do. I think Grantham should be given a raise, personally. CTG will not be suspended in spite of your pleas Barnfart. That is why he makes big money coaching football and you get peanuts writing for a fish wrapper. GO DAWGS AND GO TODD GRANTHAM!

give me a break TB

November 3rd, 2010
11:35 am

Just a side note: the shortened AJC quote by CTG is as follows:
Asked if he feels that he owes an apology to the Florida kicker, Chas Henry, Grantham said: “I’ve kind of basically said what I’m going to say.”

So, do we know whether he apologized or not? All he said was he basically said what he was going to say. This is why you take half of what you read & only know 1/8 of what was actually said or done.

As for you, Mr. CFB (nice name given to yourself), I’m Mrs. CFB & I believe you are making matters worse. The media is so great about that! It’s a non-issue! Our UF grad friends think it was awesome. Most have said it was nice to see someone on the UGA side showing something other than a sad face. Ask the majority of their fans before you start playing the holier than thou card. Did YOU have to throw in foul language in your article or did you feel like it was getting your point across?

Stupid article, but you are a member of the media & I think they’ve all gone retarded. The PC crap has to stop!

G8R GRAD

November 3rd, 2010
11:35 am

“……and last time I checked a 20 year old isn’t a kid.”

:-D since when?

And your coach is 44!
Jeez!
How old are you?

Sad truth

November 3rd, 2010
11:35 am

Gadawgs, yes he has passion, but does he have a defensive scheme? I mean besides the choke sign.

King Gator

November 3rd, 2010
11:36 am

F-UGA-LY – kill the messenger.. 13 pages of comments, I’d say Tony has done his job and hit the mark. The AJC pays him to get you to read thier paper (on-line too). More Georgia choking going on here. Go Gators!

Topp Dogg

November 3rd, 2010
11:36 am

Tony i am giving you a sign with my finger can you guess what it means?

katherine

November 3rd, 2010
11:36 am

G8R GRAD….I have already stated that what was done was immature but not that big of a deal in my opinion. What I find very funny is that all these fans of other programs somehow think that their players and coaches don’t say and do things just like it…only don’t get caught on camera. Come on now….none of them are saints.

King Gator

November 3rd, 2010
11:37 am

BTW, I thought Grantham was just signaling in the defensive play call.. he seemed to use that set alot on Saturday. Go Gators!