Redshirt freshman quarterback Will Grier, serving a one-year suspension for violating the NCAA’s policy on banned substances, and the Florida Gators hope to see the player’s punishment reduced; the two parties are currently in the appeals process with the organization in hopes of seeing just that happen.
With much misinformation swirling surrounding Grier’s suspension, the appeals process and what’s next for the player, OnlyGators.com is here to wrap it all up and clarify things.
Why is Grier suspended?
Grier tested positive for a substance on the NCAA’s banned list. It is not known which specific substance he took, though multiple reports and a source close to the process that spoke with OnlyGators.com described it as a performance-enhancing drug. It is up to the Grier family whether to disclose the particular substance or form in which it was taken.
What is Grier’s exact suspension?
Due to violating the policy, Grier was suspended for a full calendar year, 365 days, as of Oct. 12, 2015. Should that suspension remain unchanged, he would not be eligible to play for the Gators until the seventh game of the 2016 season – against Missouri on Oct. 15 – when he will be listed as a redshirt sophomore. In the interim, Grier will be allowed to practice with Florida, though he has not returned to the field since being suspended more than one month ago.
What exactly is being appealed and who is appealing?
Grier, through attorney Clay Townsend of Morgan & Morgan, appealed the length of his ban and is seeking a reduction in his punishment, likely requesting that it conclude at the end of the 2015 season. Townsend has spent the last few weeks collecting evidence and building Grier’s case, sending appropriate materials to the NCAA in order to reference as he divulged his findings on the call itself.
The case is likely centered on one of two angles: Grier unwittingly taking a banned substance or his lawyers uncovering an issue with the way Grier’s urine sample was taken, transported and/or tested. Grier admitted to taking something that included the banned substance at his press conference on Oct. 12, noting that he did not check with Florida to confirm that what he took was allowed by NCAA rules.
Grier and Townsend presented the player’s case on a conference call with NCAA officials on Monday. According to the Orlando Sentinel’s Edgar Thompson, “University of Florida athletics director Jeremy Foley and a lawyer for the University Athletic Association also were on the call, as required by NCAA rules.”
When will a verdict be rendered on Grier’s appeal?
While NCAA officials could theoretically rule on Grier’s appeal immediately – within 24 to 48 hours of the call – a decision was never expected to be rendered within that timeframe. More than likely, it will come down as early as the end of the week and as late as the first week in December, considering the upcoming holiday. Most expect the NCAA to make an announcement on Grier’s appeal sooner than later.
Were there really “Free Willy” shirts made by his family?
How does this affect Florida in 2015?
What’s done is done. Grier is on the sideline and sophomore Treon Harris is the starting quarterback for the remainder of the season.