The Georgia Bulldogs will more than likely be missing another starter for the season opening game against Clemson on August 31st, as sophomore kicker Marshall Morgan was arrested on Saturday on charges of boating under the influence stemming from an incident at Lake Sinclair near Milledgeville, Georgia.
According to the Eatonton Messenger, DNR Ranger Cpl. Lynn Stanford responded to a call involving “an individual operating a watercraft towing two inner tubes without a spotter, which is a violation of Georgia boating regulations”; once Stanford reached Morgan, it became apparent that he was intoxicated, at which time he was administered a field sobriety test. Property bonds for Morgan were set at $1,556 for the BUI and $168 for towing a skier without an observer on board, respectively.
Bulldogs head coach Mark Richt has yet to release a statement on Morgan’s situation, but if the University of Georgia’s policy on DUI cases correlates with this particular BUI, then fans should expect Morgan to miss 20% of competition dates, which would be a little over 2 games if only regular season games are considered. If this is the case, the Bulldogs will have to turn to an unfamiliar face in the absence of Morgan, who hit 8 field goals on 14 attempts along with 63 successful extra point attempts on 67 attempts in 2013.
Make no mistake about it, this arrest has the potential to be extremely problematic for Georgia, as their first two games of the season—matchups with Clemson and South Carolina—are two of their toughest games and could make or break the team’s chances at a national championship run.
Now that Morgan is more than likely out of the lineup for the Clemson game at the absolute bare minimum, it appears that the Bulldogs will either turn to sophomore punter Collin Barber, who also served as kicker at Cartersville High School, junior punter Adam Erickson, or redshirt freshman Patrick Beless from Marist High School in Atlanta, which undoubtedly leaves the position with a major question mark. Although it hurts the team, it is clear from Coach Richt’s previous disciplinary measures that it’s a matter of how many games Morgan will miss, not that it is merely a strike against in that he will hold onto for the foreseeable future.
Will Marshall Morgan’s absence to start the season cost the Bulldogs a shot at a national title? Leave a comment and share your thoughts