ATHENS — Bacarri Rambo will miss the first four games of the coming football season after testing positive for marijuana use, his high school coach confirmed Thursday.
Seminole County coach Alan Ingram told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution that Rambo accidentally consumed some brownies containing pot during a spring break trip to Panama City Beach two weeks ago. Because Rambo had violated Georgia’s alcohol and drug policy last year — that resulted in a one-game suspension to open last season — he is subjected to random tests by UGA. He was tested recently and that sample came back positive.
According to UGA’s 2011-12 student-athlete handbook, a second offense of the athletic association’s drug policy calls for a suspension from 30 percent of competition dates. That means Rambo, an All-American safety, will be out for games against Buffalo, Missouri, Florida Atlantic and Vanderbilt.
“He’s just tore up about it,” said Alan Ingram, Rambo’s coach at Seminole County High in Donalsonville. “He’s been scared about it for two weeks.”
Ingram said Rambo confides in him about everything and actually informed him the morning he ingested the pot brownies. He said Rambo told him he woke up hungry during the vacation and found a plate of brownies in the kitchen where he was staying. After eating two with a glass of milk, Rambo began to feel high. He asked a friend vacationing with him about it and was informed that marijuana was in the brownies.
“When you holler wolf twice, I know nobody’s going to believe you,” Ingram said. “It’s a crazy occurrence that something like this could happen twice. But if there’s one person in this world I believe it’s Bacarri Rambo. The kid’s never lied to me.”
Ingram said Rambo got caught speeding near Macon last year and a marijuana joint was found in the purse of girl who was riding in his car. Rambo was not charged in the incident, Ingram said, but the Georgia coaching staff was informed of the incident, Rambo was suspended for the first game of this past season and that was his first strike against UGA’s drug policy.
Junior linebacker Alec Ogletree reportedly has also been suspended for four games for the same offense. In fact, Ingram said it is his understanding that as many as five Georgia football players may have failed drug tests during the recent round of screenings that caught Rambo.
“It’s stupid timing on the part of the University of Georgia if you ask me,” Ingram said. “I don’t know who’s policy it was to set that up after spring break but that’s crazy.”
Ogletree’s high school coach, Mike McDonald of Newnan, said he did not know the nature or length of Ogletree’s suspension but is surprised that Ogletree is in trouble.
“I don’t know anything about it,” McDonald said. “[Alec and Zander Ogletree] never got into any trouble here. They have good parents, a good home life, never got into any trouble. I never had any issues with them about anything.”
Ingram said Rambo plans to go through the athletic association’s appeals process and “see what happens there.” He said they discussed the prospect of Rambo entering the NFL supplemental draft, “I don’t think he’s leaning that way right now.”