The University Of Florida = The New Miami?

June 13, 2007 – 1:10 am by Ryan Phillips

A week ago a commenter mentioned that Urban Meyer’s Florida Gators have been in far more legal trouble than Miami lately. Turns out, he was dead right. While we’re not ready to wash any of the stain off “The U” yet, the defending national champs have had some serious offseason legal issues. And they just keep getting worse.

Two University of Florida athletes were suspended indefinitely Tuesday after each was arrested and charged with a felony after being caught in a drug sting. Brandon James, a sophomore running back, and Brandon Powell, a sophomore guard on the basketball team, were charged with felony purchase of narcotics and misdemeanor possession of narcotics. They were both arrested Monday night in Gainesville. That means no fewer than seven Gator football players have run afoul of the law since the Jan. 8 national-title win over Ohio State.

Here’s a roundup of some of the recent legal problems for the Gators:

- Guard Ronnie Wilson was charged with two felonies and a misdemeanor for an April incident involving a gun in a parking lot near campus. Wilson was suspended indefinitely.

- Safety Dorian Munroe and the aforementioned James have each faced felony charges within the past three weeks. Munroe was charged with theft for removing a University Police Department boot from his car and putting it in his trunk.

- Cornerback Jacques Rickerson was charged with misdemeanor possession of marijuana. The case was later resolved without legal punishment.

- Safety John Curtis faces misdemeanor charges for a probation violation.

- Linebacker Dustin Doe was charged with misdemeanor affray (I have no idea what that means, but I think it’s like disturbing the peace). The charges against Doe were later dropped.

- Safety Jamar Hornsby had a complaint filed against him after he “allegedly” threw a man onto the hood of a car in a Gainesville parking lot.

The problem with all these legal issues is that it isn’t the first time Urban Meyer’s boys have run a bit wild; here’s a list of problems from 2006:

- Wide receiver Kenneth Tookes discharged a gun into an occupied apartment while three other current and former Gator players were with him.

- The above mentioned John Curtis was charged with possession of an alcoholic beverage by a minor and sentenced to five days of community service, which he failed to do. A warrant was later issued for his arrest and not executed until four months later (conveniently after spring practice).

- Receiver Louis Murphy was charged with marijuana possession.

- Starting defensive tackle Marcus Thomas was kicked off the team last season after he failed three (THREE?!?!) drug tests.

Now I’m not sure about this, but I think if the Gators incur two more felony charges, the entire roster officially becomes the property of the Bengals.

Now, look, I know this isn’t all Urban’s fault, and sure, teams that win national titles often have players who feel they are above the law, but this is an alarming trend. It’s not what they are doing; it’s how many of them are doing it. Hopefully the culture of crime that surrounded the University of Miami in the late 80s/early 90s doesn’t make its way to Gainesville, but right now it doesn’t look good. Meyer should act swiftly and make an example of some of these guys. He has enough talent that losing a few guys won’t decimate his roster and might convince some of the kids to straighten up.

Let’s just all pray Tim Tebow doesn’t try to “make it rain” before the Gators Sept. 1 opener against Western Kentucky.

*UPDATE: I have received an email stating that kicker Jonathan Phillips (again, no relation) was not, in fact, arrested for providing alcohol to a minor or producing false identification.

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  1. 33 Responses to “The University Of Florida = The New Miami?”

  2. affray is just a fancy word for getting into a fight.

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  3. The police must have been Miami or FSU fans… that’s the only reason they would use a sting operation on a $20 purchase of marijuana.

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  4. No they weren’t FSU or Miami fans they were just arresting two dumbasses.

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  5. I think a better comparison could be 1980s Switzer-era Oklahoma Sooners. Starting with the Chris Rainey situation, similar sanctions can’t be far behind.

    Yet clowns at ESPN pump up Meyer, Donovan, Foley, and UF as a model of what collegiate sports are supposed to be.

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  6. Notice only a handful of UF players have made in impact in the NFL. Since Spurrier was the coach, UF players have had trouble overcoming the player 1st/student 2nd/character 3rd persona that has plagued Miami for years. And Miami is trying to clean up by having the president institute at minimum 2.5 gpa.

    Also fans at UF extremely arrogant when their team is winning, no matter what off field issues are present. If UF was losing and this was happening, we would be looking at fireurbanmeyer.com or firebillydonovan.com, but since they are winning, boosters will look the other way and say kids will be kids. These aren’t misdemeanors, they’re felonies.

    Funny how Donovan got a bigger contract after leaving UF for 3 days. Foley has no control.

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  7. How many times has a Miami player been arrested in the past 5 or ten years? Maybe a couple, but certainly not nearly as much as their reputation would have the public believe. Anyone that follows the program knows that their image is far from reality. They do not get arrested and they graduate at a rate well above the national average. Maybe it’s time you stop perpetuating the image of Miami based on the actions of players that went to the school 20 years ago. Or don’t, I really don’t care. It just makes you look like a complete jackass when you blame players who weren’t even born for actions of guys in their forties.

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  8. Is it just me, or does anyone remember that Miami got into a brawl on the field this past season. There is no comparison to UF. Miami proved they are thugs.

    Now, there are comparisons to other college programs, like Georgia. If you check every major school, some of their players are getting in trouble. It is a fact of life (remember Troy Smith’s problems?). UF is under scrutiny because it is a back to back to back championship school. Don’t hate!

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  9. Florida is replacing Miami. There’s no question about that. Replacing their performance on the field and off the field.

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  10. I think that the writer of the article along with espn is a Gator Hater. The whole season last year nobody gave ANY credit to UF for anything they did the whole season even after they won 3 national championships (1 football, 2 basketball) by no contest shall I add. Sure they have gotten into some trouble here latly but every school has there problems too, but I guess the writer wanted to hate on Florida for some reason. I just got one queston Mr. Phillips… Who is your team, and do they have a clean record???

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  11. Gators are basically grown-up whiners. (Stop picking on us because we are special)

    Urban came to UF and tried to de-thug the thugs…he played games with their heads and called special meeting to embarass them into submission. Football that year….Urban lost!

    Urban sees that the way to win is to have thugs..so they are accepted and Urby is still trying by trial and error to develope a system to cover-up more incidents than he does already but a few slip between the cracks..errr the pot!

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  12. yeah the brawl big guy was started by a FIU player who tackled the place kicker on the feild. how low and how much of a girl do you have to be to do that. on top of it, a player on crutches was swinging them at miami players, and they were also stomping on players on the ground. They are just as fault as we are. but because we are MIAMI we get shit for it and not anyone else.

    compare how many arrests miami has had in the past 5-10 years to any other school and you’ll know that anyone who hates on miami is full of crap.

    do your research before you talk smack

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  13. The most astonishing thing might be the lack of media coverage any of these “youthful indiscretions” acually get.

    If this had happened in Tallahasse, Miami, Ann Arbor, Columbus etc., etc. it would have been on the ticker on the bottom of ESPN and a lead sports story everywhere. The double standard is sickening.

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  14. please, espn sucks florida’s ass so hard they are tasting large intestine. dont pull some shit that everyone hates on florida, florida hates on everybody, gets shit back, goes into mega defensive mode, pulling the national champions card. when fsu won the 1999 title, becoming the first wrie-wire champion in AP history, they got shit because of the theft at the oaks mall, which was a misdemeanor. now that you are getting drug charges, concealed wepaons, and other assorted FELONIES, everybody is picking on you. fuck florida

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  15. yeah i’ve got to say f*** florida too… it’s not that anyone is picking on florida, it’s that florida players are getting charged with felonies… and these aren’t petty charges… drugs and guns, please, screw you florida pussies… 2 years ago when tennessee had a bunch of arrests in the off season (aka the fulmer cup) it was all over all the sports news channels, espn in particular… so florida homers don’t give me this s*** about getting picked on… oh and for miami fan, don’t even try to defend that fight last fall… the U is full of thugs too, and that fight was a horrible disgrace to college football…

    By Andy on Jun 13, 2007

  16. I dont think anybody is hating. When you have 2 kids get arrested with ak-47′s in seperate incidents, a few fights, and then drug charges i think its pretty clear. They are thugs

    1% of 1%……….hahahahahahaha

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  17. I just read all of the bloggers on this subject. Amazing to me NOT ONE COMMENTED ON ANY PROBLEMS AT FSU.
    Now, I didn’t go to any of the three Florida schools, so it can be presumed that I dont have any particular bias.

    However, having been a Florida resident for 22 years, I can remember Miami & Fsu and Florida championships and an amazing similarity to “whining and crying and foul calling” from the 2 non-compete schools in the year when any one of the three was a winner and the other 2 not.

    When will all three schools work on a memory span of greater than 2 years?

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  18. it is worth mentioning that the majority of those guys were brought in by Ron Zook…not dismissing all the accusations, just saying it merits mentioning.

    By Anonymous on Jun 13, 2007

  19. I thought Urban recruited the top 1% of 1% so much for that I guess.

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  20. Miami has had 2 player arrests in the last 8 or 9 years or so. That’s it. He who is without sin, cast the first stone.

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  21. Anyone who watched the Miami-FIU game knows what happened and for you village idiots who just mimic what they read (doubtful) or hear, I’ll give you a quick once-over..
    FIU was cheap shotting Miami all over the field, for the entire gametrying to bait them into a fight for reasons know only to them. The final straw came when FIU “players” attacked the holder and kicker on an extra point. The Miami players went to their aid and were attacked themselves.
    It’s called self defense but all the hacks out there jump on the band-wagon and all of the sudden it’s same old Miami. Rediculous!

    Get your facts straight before you opne your mouth…you look the fool, you are the fool.

    Panama Red

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  22. How many Gators have been shot lately?

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  23. In the competition to the bottom of the respectability ladder, you might also want to consider southern cal:
    http://www.bruinsnation.com/story/2006/6/26/113925/426

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  24. How many Gators have been shot? Man I thought I saw some cheap shots before but that was the lowest of the low.

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  25. Lol at you pansies trying to equate a brawl to the thugs roaming around gainsvilee dealing dope and shooting their AK’s at people.

    Here’s a dose of morality.
    Defending your teamates is honarable.
    Selling drugs and shooting people is deplorable.

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  26. “How many gators have been shot lately?”

    None, why? Because the thug Gators are the ones doing the shooting! Have you even read about all of your crimes, midemeanors and felonies?? I mean one of your thug shot his gun into an occupied apartment!!!

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  27. What a joke…are you kidding me? No mention of FSU and their NCAA record breaking amounts of arrests in the last 10 years? UF is now on their hot streak…but your not ready to “wash the stain from Miami?

    That has been the biggest problem since UM was placed on probation in 1995…everybody has basically ignored what has been going on at FSU and UF since that time….and only the common bond of jealousy and envy over the Canes accomplishments has everybody cutting Cryer and Dadgummit slack for what EASILY surpasses the Canes in criminal activity the last 12 years.

    Sad…but the double standard continues…good to see the recent drug possession charges in Gainesville making the bottom line of ESPN. Had it been UM, it would have been a 5 minute lead story on Sportcenter…

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  28. I guess FSU is a good example. They had a player get in trouble and it was put on the front page of ESPN for days. What did he do? PARK IN A HANDICAP SPOT. Can you name 10 players at FSU that it was proven they did something (ie afray (regardless of whether it was dropped), drugs, etc.)? Since 99, FSU’s had Coles/Warrick (both misdemeanors), Jones (stupid but not charged with anything), McPhearson, Rix (stupid), AJ (x2 plus theft after kicked off team), Sims (iffy), Rouse and Lewis.

    There are probably a couple others that I can’t think of but UF has had nearly that many players involved in just the past couple months and none of those incidents with the players mentioned above had anything to do with guns or drugs (though Jones was probably high). I don’t see how gators can act so self righteous. Jabar Gaffney ALONE pretty much trumped the entire FSU team over the last 8 or so years.

    By Anonymous on Jun 14, 2007

  29. You are acting like these guys possessing marijuana or being MIP’s (minor in possession) is something that doesn’t occur on every college campus with almost every student.

    Wilson is no longer on the team. Doe’s charges got dropped because 1. he didn’t start the fight, 2. he was severely outnumbered and should have gotten his ass beat.
    The incident with the kid getting thrown onto the car hood was proven to be a lie.

    Trap (marcus thomas) is an idiot. He tested positive for GHB and refused to follow the conditions and counseling demanded by the UAA.

    3 Championships don’t come without a price. The spotlight is much brighter and our guys are obviously buying pot from the wrong people or not leaving it at home.

    By Anonymous on Jun 15, 2007

  30. It is amazing how Miami has a player shot off campus and people blame the program. Florida has become the media darlings where it’s just a boys being boys mentality with the press. Florida has had a 20 – 1 ratio of arrests vs Miami in the last 10 years but Miami is still Thug U. Maybe its time for people in Gainesville to start firng back because the only good gator is a DEAD Gator.

    By MiamiJoe on Jun 16, 2007

  31. Just a note- ND suspended the leading scorer on the B-Ball team- for getting caught smoking marijuana on campus this past winter. Not from the team- from the University.

    Last year, the starting fullback was suspended from the team for the remainder of his senior year- for a DUI over fall break in his home town.

    By Anonymous on Jun 18, 2007

  32. Self righteous Gators are so apt to state the 3 National Championships (or their favorite phrase back to back to back) they have in the last year. Dont forget FSU has 2 in the last year bitch!

    By Anonymous on Jun 23, 2007

  33. You guys just won’t give it up, will you? UF is like the Virgin Mary to you: Without sin. I am so sick of hearing how great UF is and how great their kids are and how Miami is full of thugs, should have dropped football 15 years ago, etc. Fact is, none of Miami’s players have been in trouble with the law in years. You think you clowns would finally just SHUT UP, because NOW your constant criticism of Miami makes you look RACIST. Just a regular KKK meeting with you clowns all the time.

    By Anonymous on Jun 28, 2007

  34. dude, gators have been getting arrested every summer for years. but theres a difference, we don’t just commit a dumb crime for the sake of crime, we prefer stealing bikes or perhaps some jewelry from a high school game locker room at half time. but we don’t kill people, and besides Major Parker, we don’t deal coke, so back off. Oh yeah, and we go to a real school. I”m tired of these people who try to pass Miami off as a real college. Anyone who wants to send me 30k a year, I will send them a degree signed by me and they will have the equivalent of a Miami Education. also, florida fans actually went to the univ of fla unlike miami fans who are 50% homeless, and 50% spanish kids who’s hope of going to college ended in kindergarten.

    By Anonymous on Jul 1, 2007

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