By now, you have probably heard the news of the arrest of 3 Tennessee players for attempted armed robbery up in Knoxville early this morning. One of the three players was none other than former Pahokee standout/Benedict Arnold impersonator/subject of Kiffin grand larceny/source of banishment of UT coaches from Pahokee Highs campus/subject of Kiffin's public reprimand from Mike Slive/recent UT problem child - Nu'Keese Richardson. That's a hell of a resume for a kid who hasn't even finished his freshman year of college.
I think Coach Meyer ought to send a personal thank-you letter to Lane Kiffin. If not for Kiffin stealing this prized recruit away from Florida in the 11th hour, he would be wearing orange and blue. Let's all pause for a second and be thankful that we don't have to deal with the distractions this kid brings in the midst of this already somewhat tumultuous, yet special season. I can handle the penalty and conspiracy accusations. I can handle offensive backpedaling. I can even handle the eye gouging outrage. But attempted armed robbery at gunpoint is not something we can deal with this season with so much at stake (or ever for that matter)!
There's no doubt the reason Richardson changed his commitment to UT is that Kiffin promised him immediate playing time as a freshman - something Meyer (thankfully) doesn't do. It's not fair to the team, the player or the program. Apparently after being given playing time, Richarson was eventually beat out and has been watching from the sidelines. He talked about (or at least others have claimed) a transfer to another school. He was also facing discipline with Kiffin for either missing a practice or violating a team rule when he decided to hold up a few kids at a Pilot station in the middle of the night on a Wednesday.
The rest of the SEC will smirk as they wait to see how the boy wonder handles this situation with the media. The jokes will fly (I've already heard one talk show host suggest "1/2 game suspension, because that's what Urban would do"). I think up until this point Kiffin has done a pretty good job at UT. Many point to the defense and say it's because of Monte. But the defense at UT was already stellar and the offense has improved by leaps and bounds this season. I'll be interested to see how he handles the media attacks as well, but just remember that it could easily be Meyer behind those microphones addressing this mess.
Go Gators. Beat the 'Cocks.