Ray Drew’s announcement in January brought plenty of joy to Georgia fans. As it turned out, it also brought a few NCAA violations.
Georgia reported five violations to the SEC office as a result of Drew’s announcement, according to a copy of a letter athletics director Greg McGarity sent to the SEC. It doesn’t appear that the Georgia football program is itself at fault, and the violations seem to be secondary in nature. The eligibility of Drew, rated the nation’s ninth overall prospect by Rivals.com, isn’t likely to be jeopardized. (The AJC reported the violations first on Wednesday.)
Here's a copy of the letter McGarity sent the SEC.
The violations center on Drew’s decision to have two former Bulldogs, David Pollack and Randall Godfrey, present at his announcement in Thomasville. That’s a no-no according to NCAA rules, although Georgia says neither player is officially a booster or associated with the program, other than being former players. (McGarity’s letter does not name Pollack and Godfrey, but the pair of former players were prominently in attendance at Drew’s announcement.)
“UGA regrets that this violation occurred but believes this was an isolated/one-time incident with some unusual and atypical circumstances,” McGarity wrote to the SEC.
McGarity’s letter detailed five specific violations:
1. 22.214.171.124 — General Rule (regarding unauthorized off-campus recruitment)
2. 126.96.36.199 (g) — General Exceptions/Unavoidable Incidental Contact
3. 188.8.131.52 (d) — Restrictions, Athletics Representatives/Visiting Prospective Student-Athlete’s Institution
4. 184.108.40.206 — Off-Campus Contacts or Evaluations
5. 13.10.2 — Comments Before Signing
In the letter, McGarity said the incident showed there was “a gap in our education efforts to our former letter-winners.”
The letter outlines in detail all contact between Drew and the former letter-winners, including three run-ins before Drew’s announcement. Those are included among the five reported violations.
Georgia became aware of the potential violations after Drew’s announcement, upon hearing that the former Bulldog players were there. It undertook its own investigation and then McGarity addressed the letter to SEC commissioner Mike Slive earlier this week.
McGarity's letter said the decision for the two former players to attend Drew's announcement came "without the knowledge of UGA's football staff." Drew told the AJC that “Georgia coaches knew nothing about it.”