Winter and spring quarters are a time that makes the stewards of college football programs nervous. The players have more time on their hands and enivatably if you are going to have a breach in discipline and judgement it will likely happen this time of year.
Chip Kelly at Oregon has been dealing with it on a weekly basis this off season. I can only think of one quiet weekend for the Oregon football team law wise since classes began but even that was marred by one of the cheerleaders picking up a DUI.
As a Husky fan we look South and grin when stuff like that happens. It is a definite sign that there are problems deep within the Oregon program and that coach Kelly is struggling for control of a team that should go to the Rose Bowl again next season.
We all know Washington and every other football program in the country is not immune from bad behavior. When you put together a group of 105 18-22 year olds there will be problems no matter how vigilant you are. One of those problems happened this past weekend when Husky DE Andru Pulu alledgedly beat a 22 year old man senseless at a party. The police report says he kicked the victim repeatedly in the head while he was down on the ground. He came close to killing the victim.
While none of know anything other than what was written in the police report it is obvious that this attack was probably triggered by alcohol which seriously marred Pulu's judgement. We have all seen assorted skirmishes in this age group over the years because after all boys will be boys and boys will always be stupid when they have been drinking.
This one isn't just one of those boys will be boys type of things. This is a serious physical assault where a life was very close to being taken. There is no excuse for that type of behavior. While alcohol is likely a factor it has little bearing on this incident because of the total brutality of it. Just reading the police report sickens the average person.
Coach Steve Sarkisian did exactly what he needed to as a first step in this situation. He suspended Pulu indefinitely from the team. Due process needs to take its course but I would be very surprised if Andru Pulu is ever given a second chance. His potential loss hurts a program thin at the DE position but immediate boundaries with immediate repercussions is what Sark needs to do for the good of the overall program if the charges filed are accurate.
We watched the Oregon football program turn into a zoo this off season. It has become pretty obvious that the coaching staff has lost control of the behavior of their players. One reason for that has been inconsistent punishment for offenses. Washington needs to avoid going down road again because you don't have to have a very short memory to remember the days of Jeremy Stevens driving through retirement homes.
Sark needs to act firmly and decisively once he has all the correct information to make the proper decision. Something tells me he won't have a problem doing that.