It's only a day away. The Athletic Association website is providing some nuggets before the first real football news of the season hits, as the Dawgs prepare to kick off practice tomorrow afternoon. The news of the day is a mixture of good, bad and indifferent.
Good in that everybody who was expected to report actually did. No George Fosters this year, thankfully.
The bad is the news that sophomore center Ian Smith will be leaving the team for medical reasons. We'll always have Amici, Ian. Thanks for the memories.
The indifferent is the wholly predictable news that Blake Barnes and Tripp Chandler will each serve a one game suspension for the heinous sin of walking down Lumpkin St. with a beer. Darn scofflaws.
The Ian Smith absence is the only item that really constitutes news. Smith was to be suspended for the first five games of the season due to his repeated alcohol arrests last year.
I can't help but note that Ian hasn't had a whole lot of injuries in Athens (heck, he hasn't gotten to play a whole lot of football), so I wonder how much of his leaving was medical and how much was just frustration, dejection and the feeling that he's being left behind as the coaches go on with other players. We'll probably never know. But I would like to wish him all the best as he completes his studies.