Jonotthan Harrison hadn't met with the media in about a month between Florida's win over Arkansas that saw Harrison get ejected — but on Tuesday, when Harrison spoke to reporters for the first time since that day, he had plenty to say about it.
1/2 Jon Harrison on his ejection a few weeks ago: said he got called "every version of the N word known to man" and was talking to the ref— Richard Johnson (@RagjUF) November 12, 2013
2/2 Harrison talks with his hands, says he inadvertently touched the ref in his chest, and that's why he got ejected.— Richard Johnson (@RagjUF) November 12, 2013
Gators C Jon Harrison on his ejection vs Arkansas: "I wasn't trying to be an a-hole. I was just telling the ref to control that player."— Jason Lieser (@PBPjasonlieser) November 12, 2013
Harrison was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct and ejected from that game in the second half, which appeared to be for touching a referee with an extended finger. Harrison later put a finger to Will Muschamp's chest on the sideline — though he appeared to be demonstrating what he did to the referee.
The player Harrison tangled with on the play in question appears to be Arkansas linebacker Jarrett Lake, the only Arkansas player listed as No. 39 on the team's roster. It's unclear, as of now, whether Harrison was referring to Lake when referring to players using slurs; hopefully, Florida will release the video of Harrison addressing the media in full, for the purposes of fleshing out context.
Obviously, Harrison's making a serious accusation here — but I would trust him, more than any other current Florida player, to be telling the truth about an accusation like this. He's among Florida's brightest, smartest players, and is fantastic with the media, saying what he means and meaning what he says. I would be very surprised if this accusation, coming from him, was spurious in any way.
And while the accusation, if true, doesn't excuse or justify his actions in any way — I put Harrison's ejection in the Embarrassing category in my Rapid Recap of the Arkansas game, and wrote that "you cannot do anything to physically threaten a ref," despite my instincts and eyes telling me that Harrison was instigated, and I don't agree with diving at a player's knees, which was originally the allegation leveled at Harrison — it would certainly help to explain them.