Stephen Garcia has been suspended indefinitely for "behavior unacceptable for one of our student-athletes" according to South Carolina AD Eric Hyman. Unfortunately, this has been a part of the regular offseason routine for the past several years as this is his fifth suspension. Spring ball, spring games, preview magazines, fall camp, and Stephen Garcia getting in trouble somewhere in there.
The incident in question was about him being "loud and disruptive" at a life skills seminar. John Whittle, a reporter for the South Carolina-foucused 247sports site, reported that the class was called "Branded a Leader." Its goal is to help athletes stop making "destructive decisions." Clearly Garcia wasn't learning anything in the class.
Steve Spurrier, for his part, sounds exasperated:
"We are where we are," Spurrier said. "If he's back, he's back. If he's not back, really it's the same thing as maybe a guy getting hurt, a guy going pro, whatever.
"Players come and go, as we all know. This incident should never have happened, but it did. This is where we are."
I can't blame him for having that attitude after everything that he's gone through with Garcia. I don't think even Terry Dean gave him this many headaches. The starting job falls to Connor Shaw in the meantime as the Gamecocks get ready for their spring game on Saturday.
The real question is when, if ever, will Garcia be allowed to come back to the team. While he's been in trouble many times before, he's also been reinstated many times before. Unless Shaw has takes a big leap over the offseason, Garcia still probably gives the team its best chance to repeat as SEC East champs this fall. At the same time, where does the school draw the line and just say to him, "you're done"?