As reported today, the #15 ranked Gamecocks athletic program have dismissed Garcia for testing positive for alcohol and marijuana. Stemming from his last suspension from team activities in the spring and his reinstatement this past August, he was told to abstain from drinking to continue to stay on the team. Before the season began, he even shaved his wild beard and cut his hair to head coach Steve Spurrier’s liking, but Garcia’s on again off again play on the field and his actions off had the Ol’ Ball Coach fed up.
Garcia was benched during the Gamecocks game against Auburn two weeks ago, and he was benched for South Carolina’s 54-3 beatdown of Kentucky for sophomore Connor Shaw. He has been benched before, and suspended a total of five times in his tenure as the South Carolina quarterback. According to the Associated Press and the Washington Post, Garcia text to the AP says he is “flabbergasted” by the decision, with a full statement coming later this week.
Garcia, for his roller coaster career has decent statistics: 7,597 career passing yards, 47 TDs and 41 INTs and was 20-14 as a starter, including a SEC East Crown and SEC Championship appearance last season, South Carolina’s first since joining the conference in 1992.
Now, Garcia will be remembered more for having girls in his hotel room past curfew the night before the SEC Championship last year, being a laid back boozer who never quit on the field, but wasn’t consistent enough, and for totally taking advantage of the little patience the Steve Spurrier has.
Now that South Carolina is being led by a sophomore quarterback, this could be a positive move for the rest of the SEC EAST, most notably, the tied for first place in the East Georgia Bulldogs (4-2, 3-1 SEC) as they come against Vanderbuilt, a bye week, then Florida at the end of October.
Information used in this article are from ESPN.com, The Associated Press and The Washington Post.