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Vince Dooley: losing Crowell was ‘the best thing’ for UGA

Pat Summitt, Vince Dooley AP

Isaiah Crowell came to Georgia last year as a five-star recruit carrying with him plenty of promise. Just 16 months later, however, he was dismissed from the team after getting hit with three weapon-related charges — two of which were felonies.

Crowell’s actions are even more disappointing when you look at the immediate impact he had with the Bulldogs in 2011: 847 yards rushing and six total touchdowns.

But, he threw away his opportunity, and both parties suffer the consequences. Crowell must now make due on the 1-AA level at Alabama State and Georgia pushes on without what would have been a top-tier back in the SEC. According to at least one person with strong ties to the program, though, the decision for Georgia to part ways with its now-former star running back was the right call.

“I don’t want to put any pressure on them, but losing that guy may have been the best thing to happen to them,” former UGA coach and athletic director Vince Dooley told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It was a bad-apple type thing, if you ask me.

“That kind of thing will unite a team many times. Historically when things like this have happened in the past, they tend to have a unifying effect on teams. They go on to have an even better season than they were predicted to have.”

Dooley certainly has a point that any team is better off getting rid of a knucklehead, but as the AJC also notes, Georgia is now running below 70 scholarship players heading into this season.

Clearly, that’s not solely attributed to Crowell’s dismissal — the Bulldogs have had a hellacious offseason in terms of player attrition — but the thinning number of available bodies is concerning to say the least. Whether it will affect Georgia’s chances of returning to Atlanta this December for a second consecutive SEC championship game remains to be seen.

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12 Responses to “Vince Dooley: losing Crowell was ‘the best thing’ for UGA”
  1. rsmeans says: Jul 10, 2012 8:34 AM

    I wonder which has more crime: UGA or UGANDA?

  2. thegamecocker says: Jul 10, 2012 8:44 AM

    Georgia is a first-class university and acted correctly in dismissing Crowell. Maybe he will finally realize the opportunity he has in front of him at Alabama State and act like a solid citizen. Time will tell. Coach Dooley is correct in his POV.

  3. smadison29 says: Jul 10, 2012 8:51 AM

    Georgia has a 5* (Keith Marshall) & a 4* (Todd Gurley) RBs coming in with this year’s recruiting class. Crowell won’t be missed.

  4. woebegong says: Jul 10, 2012 8:58 AM


    Can I ask your age. How about your school affiliation?
    UGA doesn’t have anymore criminal activity than most other large public universities. The reason you hear more about UGA versus other universities is they actually report it. Some other universities have the local police in their pocket, but UGA expects it’s students to act responsibly or pay the consequences.

  5. tigersgeaux says: Jul 10, 2012 9:41 AM


    You put the nail on the head with that post! A few months ago, I spoke with a captain of our local police force who transferred here after heading investigative teams in a few other cities.

    He confirmed that UGA reports all major incidents and not only do some other schools not report, but some cities do not fully report either!

    It was a policy of the mayor’s office and police chief in several well known cities not to report even felonies if they could keep them quiet. If the news media did not arrive on scene of the crime, the police department was instructed not to speak about it to any media, and thus the people of the city never knew how bad the gang activity was in their city.

    I wonder if they kept the news of crimes from the public, what else they may have done under handed?

  6. cincycats says: Jul 10, 2012 9:41 AM

    I would bet Jim Tressel would agree 100% and wish he had never kept Prior

  7. harbourimages says: Jul 10, 2012 11:03 AM

    After reading the email exchanges at CNN regarding Paterno, it sounds like this kid would never have been let go at Penn State either. Richt and UGA are class acts, and I’m proud my sons are UGA grads (even though I would have preferred them to have gone to my alma mater, the U. of Michigan). I am glad they were able to be there in “the glory days” of Dooley and Herschel, both class guys themselves!

  8. mike693466 says: Jul 10, 2012 12:46 PM

    Dooley is not a class act at all.He lied to one player I know back in the day as you say to get him to come to Ga. and most of the players that i met sure didn’t care for him and they were starters not just run of the mill players.

  9. lurker00 says: Jul 10, 2012 1:38 PM

    When he was running the program at UGA, Dooley was once reported (in, I believe, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution) as having admitted that in order to compete at the highest level of the SEC or of college football, a school sometimes has to disregard the rules… look the other way… basically, cheat. Whether or not his evaluation is accurate is for another discussion. The point here is that to make such a statement in such a way as to allow it to be reported in public is just plain stupid. Beyond that, this attitude is characteristic of a class act? Yeah. Right.

  10. jonkybon says: Jul 10, 2012 3:24 PM

    Take it from someone that played for Coach Dooley, he was a total class act. Everyone I knew loved the man (starters and not).

    @mike693466, obviously no one but you here has a clue about what you’ve hinted at. Remember though, you’ve only heard one side of the story. Coaches promise players playing time and a chance to start early, but everyone understands that promise comes with the priviso that the time has to be earned or at least not squandered. I’d like to know who the player you knew was and how Vince lied to him. I bet it will be easy to prove there was a flip side to his story.

  11. gadawg80 says: Jul 10, 2012 5:38 PM

    yep, Coach Dooley was a fine man. Please, I am tired of Crowell blaming voodoo, the boogy man. Instead of taking responsibility for his actions. I hope he stops acting crazy. No need to have a gun that has the serial numbers filed off.

  12. mrslay1 says: Jul 10, 2012 8:02 PM

    Sometimes these kind of kids grow up, learn, and make a man out of themselves. Sometimes not. I hope for this kid he turns his life around.

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