UGA football recruit apologizes to Bulldog fans for arrest

Collin Barber, who is committed to UGA on a football scholarship, said he wants to apologize to Georgia fans for his arrest last month. The punter from Cartersville High School was charged with four counts of destruction of mailboxes.

“I messed up with what I did; it was really dumb,” Barber told the AJC. “I feel like I let a lot of Bulldog fans down. Actually, I feel like I let a lot of people down – my family, my friends, my coaches and my teammates. I feel like a lot of people that looked up to me are now going to look down on me because of that.

“I’ve apologized to [UGA coach Mark Richt]. I also want to apologize to the Bulldog fans. Hopefully, everybody can move forward from this.”

Cartersville HS punter Collin Barber

Cartersville HS punter Collin Barber

After the incident, Barber was suspended for Cartersville’s season-opener and had to do extra running at practice for a week.

What about his football scholarship to UGA? Barber feels like it is secure after talking to Georgia’s coaches over the phone and in person at last Saturday’s game. However, he won’t know for sure until the police charges are resolved and his application is reviewed by UGA’s admission committee.

“I’m pretty sure it will be safe; Georgia’s coaches said my scholarship offer would be safe, more than likely,” Barber said. “[UGA assistant Will Friend] called me and I told him the story. He doubted it would cost me the scholarship. Coach Richt then called my high school coach and said that it probably wouldn’t affect me. I also talked to the Georgia coaches briefly at the South Carolina game.

“I feel as good as I can about the scholarship. I don’t think anything bad will happen. But if it does, then you know life goes on. You’ve got to move on from what happened, and I will learn from this mistake. But I’m pretty sure it will be OK.”

What exactly happened on the night of the arrest? Barber said he was driving a truck with a couple of friends in it — one of them grabbed a baseball bat behind the backseat, leaned out of the passenger’s side window and hit four mailboxes on the way out of a subdivision. “We didn’t think about it in the present moment and then when we did a few minutes later, we knew we were in trouble.”

After being charged by the Cartersville police, Barber talked things over with his parents and decided to return to the scene the next morning. “I felt really bad so I apologized to everyone and repaired the four mailboxes,” he said. “We bought brand new mailboxes, and repainted two of the four posts. All four [homeowners] forgave us. They were very understanding, and they said didn’t want to press charges. Hopefully, this will all get figured out, and it will all blow over.”

Barber said he learned an important life lesson: “If you’re in a crowd and somebody is doing something wrong, you’re still going to get in trouble, along with everybody else. I know with me, I’m never going to get myself in any situation like this again. I’m going to walk away from the crowd and leave.”

Following the incident, Barber’s arrest was published in the local newspaper as part of the regular police blotter. Due tp Barber’s connection to UGA, the story quickly went viral on college football websites and message boards.

“I just wish people knew me before they said all these things on message boards about me,” Barber said. “I’m an Honor Roll student, I don’t skip class, I don’t party – I don’t do any of that stuff. My mom is the director of a children’s shelter, and I go out there and play with the kids all the time.

“It’s not like I’m bad kid. Yes, I made a mistake, and I accept the consequences of that mistake. But it kind of bothers me that some people just want to judge me by this one mistake when they don’t know all the good things I’ve done and stand for … Hopefully, those people will forgive me, too, and we can all move forward.”

WE’VE MOVED!!! Visit the AJC’s NEW Recruiting page by clicking here or going to ajc.com/sports/recruiting

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– By Michael Carvell, AJC Recruiting Blog

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Got an item? mcarvell@ajc.com

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71 comments Add your comment

merbertmoover

September 15th, 2011
2:44 am

Drew

September 15th, 2011
3:22 am

Forget about those people kid. Certain media outlets, including some writers on this publication love to make a big deal out of UGA’s off the field troubles. The true Dawg fans forgive you…learn from it, and move on. You showed a lot of remorse and class by apologizing to the coaches and fans, and by fixing the mailboxes. Keep up the grades and the good attitude.

Bean Counter

September 15th, 2011
3:30 am

Let those among us who have committed no wrong cast the first stone. He accepted responsibility for what happened. We need more young men with this kind of character!

dawgerbrown

September 15th, 2011
6:13 am

Sounds like alot of growing up was done in a short period of time. Taking responsibility for his actions and apologizing to the homeowners shows a high level of maturity and understanding. Wish more kids were like him as far as that is concerned. Glad to know he will still be a DAWG. I’m sure after this incident, he values his scholarship more than most. Maturity is also shown by who you decide to hang out with,and what situations you put yourself in as much as it is by your own actions.

Worm

September 15th, 2011
6:17 am

Hope you learned from your mistake..We’ve all done kid stuff, but You are representing UGA now..
Good luck..

Lesson well learned

September 15th, 2011
6:18 am

I hope other kids learn that the impact one’s actions can be severe. Hopefully, this lesson will stick with him, and he’ll have a great career at UGA.

RomeDawg

September 15th, 2011
6:25 am

The lessons learned best are learned the hardest! Don’t spend a second concerning yourself with those that won’t “forgive” you. There are 3 guarantees in life. 1) death 2)taxes 3) you will not EVER be able to please EVERYBODY.

You done the crime, you done the time, now move on and enjoy your time as a college student!

Paddy

September 15th, 2011
6:31 am

Taking responsibility for what you do in life is a lost art. Nice going kid!

George P

September 15th, 2011
6:59 am

This is one of the traditional stupid things high school kids do. He should pay for it, but the payment should be in line with the crime. If he accepts what he did was wrong, and the kids replace all the mailboxes, then that should be enough.

rennie curran

September 15th, 2011
7:03 am

just slap that girl, man!

DC

September 15th, 2011
7:09 am

Are you kidding me? What guy hasn’t been a part of bashing a mailbox? Look, it’s not a good thing to do, but if this is the worse the kid has ever done, big deal. Especially if no charges are being filed.

GT Bob

September 15th, 2011
7:13 am

By the time you finish reading this, Aaron Murray has FUMBLED AGAIN.

Georgia Tech 2-0!!!!

Ozzy

September 15th, 2011
7:15 am

Oops.

I’m not a Georgia fan, but that’s the way you handle it when you make a mistake.

Good luck to him. He sounds like a pretty good kid.

Baby Bennett frisky

September 15th, 2011
7:20 am

I say it’s great to be a Georgia Bulldawg !!!

WICSGDF?

Recruiting

September 15th, 2011
7:22 am

What’s to apologize for…just another Richt recruit. Enough said.

King Gator

September 15th, 2011
7:34 am

Stay off the scooters and you’ll be fine kids. Good luck and way to man up. Go Gators!

C. Tampa Ironworse

September 15th, 2011
7:35 am

Wait a minute…THAT’S what happened to my mailbox!!!

Fleming Island Dawg

September 15th, 2011
7:40 am

Just another Richt recruit killing a mailbox. I sure wish he had beat up a cop or kicked a guys face in at a bar. Don’t know how Mark Richt keeps recruiting kids that drive scooters in the wrong lane and break mailboxes. Please “Recruiting” fill us in on how we can get those kids that beat up cops and kick people in the face and rob convience stores and shoot automatic weapons in parking lots. Those are much better.

Mark Richt fan

September 15th, 2011
7:41 am

Mark Richt recruited Cam Newton as a TIGHT END!!! LOLOLOLOLOL

Burdell

September 15th, 2011
7:42 am

What I was going to say before I rudely interrupted myself…

Sounds like a good kid…way to be accountable! Everyone does stupid sh1t when they are younger but most don’t atone for their actions.

The Ghost of Wally Butts

September 15th, 2011
7:51 am

Well, if he really wants to fit in at UGA these days, he better grow out that short hair, braid it, get a twitter account and tweet insults to opposing coaches, learn how to beat his chest and flash gang signs after plays, and finally, learn some dance moves for the sideline while the game is in progress…..oh, and don’t throw away that Power Ranger costume that Santa bought you – we wear them!

Right now, he looks a little too “legit” to fit in with the current UGA style.

Tim

September 15th, 2011
7:53 am

Hey Michael, are you a professional journalist? Have you ever heard of proof reading? “After incident, Barber” “Due Barber’s connection”

islander

September 15th, 2011
8:00 am

this was high school prank, i hate when players get in trouble. this should have not even made the news. most times i agree with law enforcement. this should ahve been contact parents and make kid payback to have the mailbox fixed. just like the kid at uf (finley) was in the wrong . still was not news worthy. that officer had handcuffed someone for j walkin. sometimes the players are singled out.

FloppyBalls

September 15th, 2011
8:04 am

Wow bet if that Kid was “Black” the good ole boys would want his head!!!!!!

Class of '98

September 15th, 2011
8:08 am

Throwing in a red shirt with the white laundry is a “mistake”. This kid made a conscious decision to break the law and destroy property.

I’m tired of hearing people who break the law say they “made a mistake”.

Chris Whitfield

September 15th, 2011
8:10 am

Fix your tie, Carvelle.

Stupid People

September 15th, 2011
8:14 am

Sounds like the kid has made the appropriate amends. Case closed.

Floppyballs, you’re just the kind of jerk that always wants to make something racial out of something that has no relationship to race.

And to all of you techies poking fun at the Dawgs…..just wait, your time is coming. Thanksgiving weekend is still a long time away, but when it gets here…..

slydog

September 15th, 2011
8:17 am

@Class of ‘98

Thanks for looking at this the way it is. It was a dumb decision by a kid who can’t see himself ten years down the road. The same as every other human being on the planet who has ever been a kid. I suspect that if Collin “looked” different or had cornrows, all these folks would not be applauding and wanting to print out statements. A better example is Vick. Print out his statements and download the interviews and the talks to kids around the country. Show that to your kids. In short, there are no mistakes when it comes to behavior, just decisions on what I think I can get away with.

Joe

September 15th, 2011
8:18 am

These kind of recruits are the reason why your team sucks. Keep bringing them in! The rest of the sec likes it

Ga 88

September 15th, 2011
8:19 am

Kene looks high in that photo. Just sayin

FloppyBalls

September 15th, 2011
8:22 am

Come on Stupid !! Give me a break, everyone is saying ahh he learned his lession give him a pass… Thats Bull “if that kid was of any other race the “Dawgs” would want him out!! Hey but I could be wrong.

DC

September 15th, 2011
8:22 am

That DC dude needs a new screen name haha..war eagle! Good for that kid to man up…im sure he feels really stupid for doing all of this…

RxDawg

September 15th, 2011
8:32 am

Meh kids being kids. This isn’t eactly an evil act. I haven’t thought twice about it.

wolfman

September 15th, 2011
8:43 am

Yep, he’ll fit right in!

RedandBlackDAWG

September 15th, 2011
8:44 am

The kid probably got a good lesson in life, about having to be responsible for your ations. I bet he has matured a whole lot over this incident. How many in the course of our youth didn’t do stupid things. Society today as a whole, is much more forgiving than when I was growing up in the 50’s and 60’s, but I think he has learned a valuable lesson about being responsible. He could have blown a chance that a lot of kids would give anything to have with a scholarship, and hopefully, he will still have it. He has learned a harsh lesson in reality. We are all acountable for our actions.

Good luck to the young man and I hope he still gets to play for UGA in the future.

how2fish

September 15th, 2011
8:45 am

Colin that was a bad idea, but by manning up you made a great recovery…sounds like you learned a valuable lesson..Welcome to the Bull Dog Nation best of luck in the classroom and on the field!

WDE

September 15th, 2011
8:46 am

@GT Bob you guys still on probation aren’t you?

Paul N Destin

September 15th, 2011
8:47 am

His father needs to whip his azz

Kennesaw gator

September 15th, 2011
8:47 am

Nothing to apologize for – an arrest record is just part of being a Bulldawg. Kid’s gotta get some bling, though, and learn how to wear a cap backwards for his pictures.

RedandBlackDAWG

September 15th, 2011
8:52 am

What is truely amazing is how, even when a story that should make you feel a little better about peoople in society is published and has anything to do with UGA, the same azzholes have to say something, completely unrelated to the story to try and make a stupid remark about UGA. This kid is more of a man, then any of these lame people. At least he doesn’t hide behind a computer screen and act like some type of childish idiot. Some of you folks, need to grow up. You are amusing, only to yourselves.

WDE

September 15th, 2011
8:55 am

@FloppyBalls you win! It not 9am yet and you have already taken the “Moron of the Day” trophy !! Congrats you must be so proud!

UGA Dawg 97

September 15th, 2011
9:00 am

No worries and no need for apology kid. Under Richt’s tenure you’ll fit right in! Keep up the good work.

1eyedJack

September 15th, 2011
9:01 am

What is the statute of limitations on this sort of thing? ;)

DawginLex

September 15th, 2011
9:07 am

That was a tough thing for him to do.

He accepted responsibility

Need more of that today in our country.

Like for example if the debt crisis happens on your watch Mr President, don’t go back 30 years blaming others.

slydog

September 15th, 2011
9:11 am

@WDE How is he a moron of the day? Let’s examine these subconcious racially biased statements:

Kennesaw gator
September 15th, 2011
8:47 am

Nothing to apologize for – an arrest record is just part of being a Bulldawg. Kid’s gotta get some bling, though, and learn how to wear a cap backwards for his pictures.

The Ghost of Wally Butts
September 15th, 2011
7:51 am

Well, if he really wants to fit in at UGA these days, he better grow out that short hair, braid it, get a twitter account and tweet insults to opposing coaches, learn how to beat his chest and flash gang signs after plays, and finally, learn some dance moves for the sideline while the game is in progress…..oh, and don’t throw away that Power Ranger costume that Santa bought you – we wear them!

Right now, he looks a little too “legit” to fit in with the current UGA style.

And so on and so on. Where is your response to that?

slydog

September 15th, 2011
9:13 am

@DawginLex Did the debt crisis really start under Obama? What he needs to do is straighten out the mess on his watch, not go back and blames; I’m with you on that. But this debt crisis has been a mess ever since the Articles of Confederation were signed…hahahha

JB

September 15th, 2011
9:13 am

Hope Coach Richt and Coach friend is there to welcome the young man next summer. Win 8 games he can be. 8-4 will bring him back. Half will be happy about it, half mad. Just like the political climate in this country.

JB

September 15th, 2011
9:16 am

Muschamp cleaning up Florida. You don’t hear much, but rumors are he’s kicked 7 off the team since last spring.

slydog

September 15th, 2011
9:16 am

Just like I thought WDE, those folks are not morons to you.

Dawg Tell

September 15th, 2011
9:19 am

No one on this blog knows Colin Barber;so why pass judgement on an 18 yr. old who took the steps to apologize for his actions.Any person who makes comments about what he did,where he will attend school and other personnel comments about this young man need to get a life.Also nine out of ten who make statements about any child would not do so in public.Only hiding behind a blog forum.Stand in front of his family face to face and say these things.If you are so high and almighty go ahead,do it!!Thank you Colin for your statement.