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August 3, 2008

One Dawg Arrested and Two Hospitalized

Is it too much to ask to just be nice?

Preface: The following events don't appear to be related.

Item 1: Long Snapper Jeff Henson was arrested Saturday morning for urinating in public and public intoxication. Richt has suspended the 25 year old indefinitely as this is his second boozy offense.

Note to the Universe: If you're 25 years old, you're about six years past your pissing in downtown Athens and having it just be a boys will be boys weekend. That pretty much makes you a straight up dumb ass. Per the ABH:
According to a police report, an Athens Clarke-County police officer saw Henson urinating on a wall and sidewalk at the Wachovia on the corner of Clayton and College. As the officer approached, Henson began walking up the ramp to the ATM and then another person with him told him to fix his pants because he was "hanging out."

The officer arrested Henson, who appeared very intoxicated, smelled heavily of alcohol and was unsteady, according to the report.

At the time, another male approached and said Henson had just punched him in the face at a bar. The male's left eye was red and swollen, according to the report.
Athletic Department rules call for a 30 percent suspension for a second booze offense. That's four games before the cops sort out the "he punched me" stuff.

Item 2: Michael Lemon (already dismissed from team from prior apparent stupidity), Marcus Dowtin (true freshman linebacker) and Donovan Baldwin ( junior safety) were all allegedly / apparently involved in a bar fight Saturday morning at "The Library" bar on Clayton Street. Per the AJC
Junior safety Donavon Baldwin was suspended indefinitely for his involvement in an unrelated altercation at a bar. Baldwin, who was already serving a one-game suspension because of a DUI arrest in January, was sent to St. Mary's Hospital after getting hit in the head with a beer bottle.

Freshman linebacker Marcus Dowtin also was treated at the hospital for injuries suffered in the same altercation. A release from the UGA sports communication office did not mention any penalties for Dowtin.
Lemon was arrested outside of St. Mary's Hospital for underage possession of alcohol and basically making a complete ass of himself in the hospital parking garage. Why was he at the hospital you ask? Oh...he was hanging out with his former teammates who were getting stitched up after someone opened their heads with beer bottles.

First off, I stand corrected. I thought Lemon had been booted from campus after his dismissal from the team. Hopefully, that will get resolved rather quickly in the near future.

Secondly, are you freaking kidding me with this? According to the police reports at least two other Bulldog players were somehow involved in this bar fight. So far no one has been arrested in conjunction with the fight(s).

Bar fights happen
Just because you're in or around a bar fight doesn't mean it's your fault. My sophomore year in college I roomed with a complete horses ass who was always starting bar fights. I was lucky enough to miss out on his big shows that resulted in jail time, but I saw him and another roommate clean house at Lowrey's (sp?) during nickel night. It was my good luck that I didn't sucked into it. (Note: I'm known across North Georgia for a fighting style The Ancient Samurai call "The Victim.")

Generally speaking, I don't think bar fights (assuming they don't get wildly out of hand) are that big of a deal. What worries me here is the unknown scope of the situation. It'll probably take a few days to find out who else was involved, who started it (if that ever gets sorted out), who is to blame and who else may or may not get arrested.

The bad news...when you're #1, this gets even more attention. The good news...none of the currently identified players future playing time alters the course of the 2008 season.

Bottom line where the hell was Dalton to politely ask the guys to leave?

UPDATE: Rumor is that Richt has just made Downtown Athens off limits to the team pending further notice. If true, it'll probably be confirmed by Sunday afternoon.



mdr1013 said...

I think the team needs to start being held accountable for these individuals actions. Somebody gets in trouble with the law, the whole team gets punished in-house. Banning them from downtown is a start. Next should be running them until they start puking.

Agree about Henson. Once you pass 22, urinating in public and generally being a drunken ass isn't cute anymore.

Unknown said...

I wish I could remember the details of a recruiting visit gone horribly wrong in the winter of '91 at Russell Hall. ( My FR Year)

All I remember was it was the biggest dude I had ever seen in my life up to that point (a JUCO DL). He was on our hall (for no known reason) being incredibly rude and near physical with several women.

The situation was heading towards out of hand...when one of my dorm mates (who was fighting in the Nickel Night Story above) offered to escort him out of the building in several pieces if he said another unkind word to the women in attendance.

The recruit started yelling and raising hell before he finally left.

I looked at my friend and said...."You just blew our shot of signing that dude."

His response..."If he can't whip me, we don't want him."



Anonymous said...

run them monday til every single one pukes. ban them from dt. tell them the next alcohol related arrest is kicked off the team. this is disgusting we constantly have to put up with this. I can only imagine how frustrated CMR is. Here's to inching our way to the top spot in the Fulmer Cup!

Anonymous said...

ondAnytime you get 100 or so post adolescent men together, you are going to have drinking and fighting. May not be pretty, but it is truth. The players need to take the responsibility for their actions. Athens is well known as a party town and I cannot say a word to this bunch for doing the same thing I did 2-3 nights a week when I live on campus. I cannot begin to count the number of times my group staggered home from downtown or the warehouse. Then the police would watch for a few minutes, wave and drive on. Now, they watch for a few minutes, pull in front of you, give you breath tests and everybody over 0.8 goes to the station. The students really haven't changed--the police have. So far the students, including athletes, have been slow to pick up on this. The police seem to be doing this as a for profit venture.
In the 70's, when drinking age was 18, Dooley banned any drinking downtown and unofficially told the players to hit the woods to drink. This may not be bad advice now.
Bar fights happened then too, but a scrap or two in Watkinsville never seemed to make the papers.

About Lemon. I don't think he has recovered from his mother's tragedy. I know UGA petitioned the NCAA to take up a fund for him and his brother. Did he get no therapy with this? Did anybody, especially those who had promised to be family, try to get him some help? I know that blindsiding somebody messing with your girlfriend is a bad thing. Human beings should not injure other human beings. But to cut him lose, with really no place to go is not the best way to help him. Young men make mistakes, sometimes serious ones. We don't need to dump a kid when he makes a mistake. It is wrong to separate him from the only means of assistance he had. The football team may have been the only thing he had to hang on to.

Astronaut Mike Dexter said...

Kind of off topic, but I wonder how much total urine has been, uh, decanted on that wall near the Wachovia ATM on College Avenue over the last 20 years. It's got to be in the thousands of liters by now.

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:31,
In short, I agree with you that Lemon is nowhere near resolving his issues re: his mother. I can speak from experience - lost mine at 52 after she fought lupus, strokes, etc for 20 years. Dad's are one thing, but watching your mother fight and die in tough circumstances creates a very keen sense of anger and hostility within you. It's been 8 years since her death and I'm still cognizant that my anger is something I have to watch occasionally. I'm 36 - Lemon is 23? He needs help, direction, a favor or two, and he needs football to keep him focused on a singular goal. Without that direction, he is going to run WAY off the tracks. Richt is going to completely lose that young man soon. Not saying Lemon is responsible for his action - indeed he is a man - but his circumstances HAVE to be taken into consideration.

Anonymous said...

Coach Richt recently spoke at the Jacksonville Bulldog Club and said this about the Michael Lemon situation(paraphrasing)...

He loves all his players, even when the screw up. Michael Lemon is suspended from the team because right now he has more important life issues to work out. He needs Coach Richt more as a friend and mentor than as a football coach. He can help Michael a lot more as his friend than he can as his coach right now. When he recruits a kid, he promises the parents that he will do everything in his power to help teach that young man to become successful in life and football. He will not turn his back on the kid or that promise he makes. Etc.

The bottom line... he intends to provide the help and assistance that Michael Lemon needs to work out his issues. Michael will most likely never see the football field again. But, hopefully, he can get his head screwed on straight and get on track to a productive life.

Anonymous said...

A lot of people lose one or both of their parents at a young age and compassion should be felt for all of them; however, Michael Lemon has already gotten enough special consideration just because he happens to be a big guy who can play football(or so they say).

I didn't give to the Michael Lemon Fund, but I'd be pissed if I did...knowing that the majority of that money is going to weekend drinking binges and paying for attorneys after he caved a kids face in after one of said binges because the kid was "talking to his girl".

Anonymous said...

"It was my good luck ..."

Actually, it was your good judgment, which is something some of these players apparently lack.

JasonC said...

Was the JUCO DL recruit Matt Storm? It would fit that time frame.

Banning downtown is a good idea.

Anonymous said...

Doug, while it may not be uncommon, it's still beyond stupid. If he's in an ally or someone under cover, because the line in the bar is too long or what have you, that might be understandable. But that ATM is dead center in downtown. Henson may as well have just walked to the middle of the street and whip his dick out. Urinating "in public" is one thing, but actually doing it out in the open with no real cover on a well lit, well populated street corner, I'll just say, we've got other deep snappers.

Anonymous said...

David Hale, in his article on scout, is saying that Donovan Balwdin was also arrested.

Anonymous said...

On the Michael Lemon fund: He and his brother have access to those funds for necessities, living expenses, school needs, etc. They cannot dip into that fund anytime they desire nor can it be used as an ATM. There are still pretty strict regualtions regarding than money & to date only a portion has been used.

I keep reading comments about that fund and thought I'd share with you the information I was and have since been given as a donor to that fund. Its strictly regulated.

Hope that puts some minds at ease.

Anonymous said...

The team needs to have a ton of focus and be mature to win it all this season, especially because we have a big red target on our backs thanks to the Coaches Poll. Not to be overly dramatic, but having all this happen in the same night, before classes even start, does not impress upon me that this team is mature or has a lot of focus. Also, the article implies there were apparently a lot of players on Clayton Street that night, and you've got to wonder whether we are going to have more arrests as a result of this. Uggh.

Anonymous said...

Kick Downtin and especially Baldwin off the team. After all the trouble the football team has had this year and after Richt has undoubtedly pleaded with these guys to stay cool, this still happens?

Baldwin has a DUI this year and now this. We don't need him with all the studs in the secondary. Get rid of them.

Unknown said...

Re: Matt Storm

No. Matt was white (I think). This dude was black, and UGA really didn't sign him for the '91 class.

The guy went about 6'6" and 270-280. He didn't look like ANYONE we had on campus at the time.


Unknown said...

Hale is a good reporter, but I'm not sure he's right about Baldwin.

He never showed up on the arrest report which is commonly available here:

I checked last night too.

Anonymous said...

Michael Vick had his dawgs under control better than Richt has his. (Sorry- sarcastic frustration.)
This is getting ridiculous. The last thing UGA needs is to take over the title of Thug U. With the #1 spot the media will start jumping all over these stories and blowing it out of proportion. Anyone taking odds on another arrest before they get on the plane?

Anonymous said...

OCW, Do you realize that nearly every one of the other charges involving players have been dropped or reduced.

Yours is a classic example of knee jerk reaction. Out of control program! Richt needs to get rid of the knuckleheads! You sound like Terence X of the UJC. Not flattering.

All of this makes the news but the players that count aren't involved in this crap. Baldwin is almost certainly gone and Henson too. No big deal. The kids that want to be part of a championship team are keeping their noses clean or at least keeping it under wraps.

How 'bout you get a grip.

Anonymous said...

Reason said...

Charges are almost always reduced as part of a plea bargain. That may only make things worse in that the players think "Hey, I got away with it! I only got Y instead of X."

The really tough part is what to do. I am not a fan of zero tolerance policies--they take the thought out of punishment and often lead to silly things like kids getting suspended for having a butter knife in their car on school property. Do you boot someone for an infraction regardless of circumstances? I find that to be a bit harsh; but a second offense is really dumb.

At this point, the players have to know what the limits are. Some things have bordered on silly (driving a scooter without a license--since that seemed to be unclear by several parties) to serious (fights at BBQs for some guy talking to your GF).

Drinking for those underage is the one thing that really needs to be contained. I wonder what % of these offenses involve alcohol? It has been a while since I was in college (or grad school), but it seemed that one could expect trouble when alcohol was present or in the person and the clock striking midnight or later.

How long before Outside the Lines is checking out the UGA program as it just did to Joe Pa?

Anonymous said...

Alcohol is the common denominator in all of these incidents. Drinking and fighting go hand in hand. That's why it's called liquid courage. I just don't think it's that serious as long as there are no weapons involved (ex. DUI-cars) and no cheap shots (Lemon). They occur thousands of times a day across the country and at every university on the planet. You nor Mark Richt can control it and we simply have to let the wheat and chaff settle where it may.

Anonymous said...

There is no way in hell CMR can police the situation in its entirity. Football players are treated like gods at UGA. They drink free at every bar in town and have girls hanging all over them. It's the culture in Athens and we all fuel it. Like it or not, as long as football is a big business at UGA, this type thing is going to go on. When you recruit kids to come to UGA, there will always be some in the group that can't or won't handle themselves well with all attention they recieve. I think we can expect a certain amount of off season arrests every year. There is just no way to stop it. WE might be able to curb it somewhat, but without an overall change in culture in Athens it will never be completely done away with.

Anonymous said...

+100 to Doug for use of "decanted."


Anonymous said...

I sincerely hope we have heard/seen the last of Michael Lemon!

Anonymous said...

Yes, and take Jeff Henson with him as well!

Anonymous said...

I think we need to have some UGA fans/grads interested in law enforcement join police squads in other rival college towns and patrol the night life as much as ours did. Would be interesting to see how arrest rates would probably sky rocket. Or maybe it could at least confirm my suspicions that there is an unwritten rule to not arrest players on those towns...

Dubbayoo said...

I think we've all found ourselves somewhere full of alcohol without facilities in close enough proximity. It's one thing if you're peeing on something to desecrate it and yet another because you just know you're not gonna make it to a restroom. Nevertheless you have to be smarter than that.

Anonymous said...

Three others were interviewed as witnesses. Two were cooperative: Akeem Dent and former player Antavious Coates.

One wasn't, and played the "you just want to get football players in trouble" card: Caleb King.

That's not a name I wanted to read in connection with crap like this.

JasonC said...

Anon 2:58 & 3:52,

That "it's gonna happen, so what can you do thinking" is part of the problem. If Richt has put downtown off limits that is a start. Some leadership from within the player ranks is another good step. Richt can put down guidelines and tighten the reigns and if the players don't like it, they can walk.

We all have made mistakes and we still make mistakes. But after a while, I figured out if I got drunk, there was a greater chance that I would do something stupid- pass out, piss on Athens City Hall, drive drunk, etc., so I stopped getting drunk and those other things stopped happening.

Teaching consequences and responsibility is what is needed, not "well, we mind as well just put up with it."

Holla said...


Right, people have to learn not to party all the time and that there are consequences of getting hammered that are usually undesirable. And most people, like it or not, learn that lesson by partying like crazy through college and then "straightening up" sometime after. This is what huge numbers of undergrads do across the board, not just athletes. It IS going to happen. It even happened with YOU apparently, as you just told us.

But you grew out of it. Yes, and that's great. And so will (most) of the current batch of college kids who are doing the same thing. Why is their "wild phase" so horrible compared to yours?

I'm actually a "straight arrow" kind of guy who went to a christian liberal arts college and I only drink alcohol when I take communion . I would prefer to see our youth culture not so given over to drunkenness. But, it is, and the notion that a football coach can keep his players from participating in that culture (when the entire student body does the same stuff) is just not realistic. Boys WILL be boys, as they say.

Kick off the violent ones, those who are multiple offenders, etc. But wrining our hands over college kids getting in trouble while downtown is just silly.

And Baldwin got HIT IN THE HEAD with a bottle, right? Other than that, we don't know anything about the details of that "fight," do we? So I'm not entirely sure why he should be kicked off the team, unless there's more information that says he was himself committing acts of violence. But getting hit in the head by someone else shouldn't be a bootable offense.

Anonymous said...

There goes Dewberry for 2 games. I can't blame him, i mean it's just so much fun to smash parking devices at the hospital.....ARE YOU KIDDING ME???

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