Blog Entry

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

Posted on: October 11, 2011 5:09 pm
Edited on: October 11, 2011 5:27 pm
TAMPA, Fla. – Gary Garcia, the father of former South Carolina quarterback Stephen Garcia, said his son was dismissed from the program Tuesday for “having a couple of beers,” which violated the zero tolerance policy Stephen had agreed to abide by.  

“We have a lot of decisions to make right now,” Gary Garcia told Tuesday afternoon. “We don’t know what his options are yet. We’re trying to absorb everything that’s happened. It’s happened so quickly.”

Gary Garcia was with his son in Columbia, S.C., helping Stephen pack to return to their hometown of Tampa, Fla. Garcia graduated in May.

“Obviously, he’s responsible for his own actions, which we’ve told him from the beginning,” Gary Garcia told The Tampa Tribune. “The stuff he did in the beginning, he should’ve known better than that. He should’ve made better decisions. We understand that.

“I don’t hold the university responsible for it. Stephen did it. He should be responsible. You only get so many chances.”

Stephen Garcia had been suspended – and reinstated five times. He told after the Gamecocks’ season opening victory against East Carolina how appreciative he was of getting one final chance.

"Once I was told the conditions (to meet) in order for me to return, I knew I would be able to come back and just get it done,” Garcia said on Sept. 3. “Get back on the team at whatever cost. I don't know where I'd be right now if Coach (Steve) Spurrier, (athletic director) Mr. (Eric) Hyman and President Dr. (Harris) Pastides didn't give me the conditions and allow me one more final chance."

Spurrier said he was “saddened this has occurred.”

“We all feel like we’ve given Stephen numerous opportunities to be a student-athlete here at South Carolina,” Spurrier said in a statement. “Obviously, he has chosen not to follow the guidelines of his reinstatement contract. We wish him the best.”

Gary Garcia said his son had agreed to a zero tolerance to return to the team in the summer.

“I don’t know many college kids who can handle zero tolerance, but those were the choices we had,” Gary Garcia said. “You could second-guess yourself. Should he have even come back here? Go somewhere else?

"He made a commitment to South Carolina and his teammates. He wanted to win a championship. He had a chance this year. God works in mysterious ways. I don’t know what’s ahead for him, but it will be something.”

Gary Garcia said it was almost a sense of relief for his son and the chance for a fresh start. He said his son does not have an alcohol problem.

“I don’t think he has to get anything squared away,” Gary Garcia told the Tribune. “He has been doing well. I don’t think he’s a loose cannon. He’s a wannabe college student who has a lot of eyes on him.

“To start off like he started (with numerous suspensions) was not on level ground. He was below the ground. At home, he’ll be a lot more conscientious. The players and coaches here (at South Carolina), they’ve called and texted him. They just think he’s a college kid. Leave him alone. Everything he does gets reported. He’s an SEC quarterback. He’s not Tim Tebow. But there’s only one Tim Tebow, I know.”

Gary Garcia said he plans to eventually contact former Tampa Bay Bucs coach Jon Gruden and others for advice on what options his son has as far as playing professionally. But he said he’s more concerned about his son returning home to Tampa.

"At the end of the day, we’re going to keep our heads up," Gary Garcia said. "He’s going to do something good. Something good will come out of this. God has a plan for him. We don’t know yet, but it’s going to be something special."


Since: Sep 2, 2006
Posted on: October 13, 2011 9:28 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

yeah, beer and cocaine. great comparison.

Since: Mar 12, 2007
Posted on: October 13, 2011 2:38 am

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

His dad didn't blame South Carolina but his dad also said he doesn't have a drinking problem.  Showing up to a function where you are there to speak intoxicated is grounds for a drinking problem.  To get a 6th chance and have alcohol when you are not supposed to is a drinking problem.  YOu people say he just wants to be an average college student, guess what, he can't be.  He chose to accept the scholarship and to be the starting QB at a major division 1 school.  He chose to be unaverage.  That was his choice not anyone elses.  He screwed up his college career and people are applauding his dad for not blaming South Carolina.  Who else do you blame then?  Had he been able to accept his role and lead his team they could have very easily waltzed right into the SEC Championship game and could have possibly have beaten either Alabama or LSU on that day. 

Since: Aug 30, 2007
Posted on: October 12, 2011 10:41 pm

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

It's a matter of priorities here. Garcia thought drinking a few beers was more important than playing college football. This is after having been disciplined a separate 5 prior times, not sure if all alcohol related, but some were. Thats his call. Dad played it cool but I hope he is scrutinizing Stephens drinking habits with a lot more attention than what he says to the media. Playing college football at this level is a big opportunity that can lead to lots of money and to throw that opportunity away for booze is sad. And not being able to control your drinking despite the known consequences (and known random monitoring of imbibing in this case) is a cardinal sign of alcoholism.  

Since: Mar 30, 2007
Posted on: October 12, 2011 7:23 pm

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

Agree with those who commend Mr. Garcia on how he handled this...looks like Stephen has a father he can look up to and hopefully emulate. Cool article.

Since: Jan 21, 2007
Posted on: October 12, 2011 5:32 pm

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

This society needs more straight up fathers like Gary Garcia and not dish out any BS about Stephen Garcia's misbehavior.

Since: Aug 2, 2007
Posted on: October 12, 2011 2:35 pm

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

I think Gary Garcia handled this like a real dad. He isn't pointing fingers at South Carolina and he's not acting like his son is innocent. As a dad he has to be supportive of his son and keep a positive attitude. Sounds like a class act to me! Also, I'm sure that Stephen is remorseful for his actions and probably regretting a lot of things at this point.

Since: Jan 17, 2008
Posted on: October 12, 2011 1:59 pm

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

Six strikes and you're out.  Garcia is was the Steve Howe of college football.

Since: Oct 15, 2009
Posted on: October 12, 2011 1:51 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Sep 10, 2010
Posted on: October 12, 2011 1:35 pm

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

He agreed to the no alcohol policey. Age has nothing to with it. The school has the right to do this.  That was the final violation for the school. If it was his first infraction, you should give the kid another chance. He needs to learn you can`t do everyhting or have it your way. It was a lack of disipline on his part.

Since: Dec 14, 2010
Posted on: October 12, 2011 1:01 pm

Dad says Garcia violated "zero tolerance policy"

god wanted him to drink a couple beers - that's why god put those beers in front of him.  I mean, god likes a good frosty as much as the next one....

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