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Will Grier files NCAA appeal: That's the report that came from Gator Country's Nick de la Torre on Wednesday, and it signals the next step in Grier's process to try to get his year-long suspension for a failed NCAA drug test shortened. De la Torre also provided some insight on how, exactly, Grier plans to go about proving his case is worthy of reconsideration:
Grier will argue that he was given information that the supplement he took was indeed cleared by the NCAA and hope to have his suspension mitigated, enabling him to play at the beginning of the 2016 season. His attorneys have hired experts to help aid them in proving that Grier had no knowledge that the supplement he took contained a banned substance. Additionally, Grier and his representation will argue that the policy that the NCAA holds student-athletes — which is congruent to the standard that Florida adopts — to is too harsh.
How that strategy was arrived at is anyone's guess. Grier taking an NCAA-approved supplement that was later found to be contaminated, or otherwise changed, would seem to be a valid defense — but the NCAA doesn't publish a list of approved supplements, just incomplete lists of banned drugs that direct readers to follow URL rabbit holes to find other incomplete lists of banned drugs. From my vantage, it would seem hard to believe that Grier simply took something he'd been taking, only to fail a drug test out of the blue — but, then, I'm not privy to any more evidence, damning or exculpatory.
One thing de la Torre didn't discuss in his report on Grier's appeal, though, might actually be the most important thing about it: Grier and Florida could have produced a much swifter outcome, if Florida really wanted one. The relevant passage from the NCAA's drug testing program rules:
126.96.36.199. If the student-athlete’s next competition is imminent and if the institution so requests, the NCAA competitive safeguards committee or a subcommittee thereof shall make a good-faith reasonable effort to hear the appeal before the student-athlete’s next contest or within 48 hours of the institution’s notice of intent to appeal, whichever is longer.
Just now filing an appeal does not count as "the institution's notice of intent to appeal"; that has to be filed within 48 hours of notification of the positive test. Grier and Florida filing his appeal suggests that there was no such request that Grier's appeal be fast-tracked in October, when his suspension was announced. And there's no other writing on the specific timeline of when an appeal is to be held after its formal filing.
And so, just as we did prior to de la Torre's report, we wait.
Men's basketball to begin Mike White era with exhibition: I'm not going tonight — it's an exhibition; there's a concert elsewhere — but I'm definitely interested to see how Florida looks. If you are going, let us know in the comments; I might have an assignment for you. (Chris Harry, GatorZone)
Three keys to avoiding a Homecoming faceplant: Without reading in full, I'm guessing they are: 1) Don't commit six turnovers and allow two special teams touchdowns; 2) Don't play a quarterback whose shoulder was so hurt that he wouldn't play again that season; 3) Don't put the team in a dump truck, because Twitter scorn from armchair critics is actually something that has a tangible effect on a team's on-field play. (Jordan McPherson, The Independent Florida Alligator)
Treon Harris stabilizing Gators: I generally agree with this premise. (Scott Carter, GatorZone)
Women's hoops assistant drawing inspiration from Biggie: I like Shimmy Gray-Miller a lot, as I've mentioned here before. (Ethan Bauer, The Independent Florida Alligator)
Abby Wambach's talk: I went on Tuesday, and I considered writing it up yesterday, but I'm still digesting it, and what I want to say about it. Maybe next week?
Grading Florida's QBs: This, too, is getting pushed to next week. My apologies.
Your Gators moments of zen:
The comments are yours.