The SEC office has announced that Auburn defensive tackle Nick Fairley will not be suspended for any of his questionable hits on Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray last Saturday.
Associate commissioner Charles Bloom said yesterday that “The matter is being handled internally between the conference and the institution.”
The league took a look at tape of the game including the helmet-to-the-back shot Fairley delivered in the third quarter — which drew a 15-yard penalty. That shot to Murray’s back was by far the worst of Fairley’s hits. It was deserving of the flag it received. It was deserving of a look-see from the SEC office.
But it was not deserving of a suspension.
That said, the league has now put Fairley and Auburn on notice. Therefore, it would be best for him not to push the envelope against Alabama next week because every official (and camera) in the building will be on him. And rightly so.
Kevin Scarbinsky of The Birmingham News believes the league made the proper call regarding Fairley.
Tony Barnhart of The AJC writes the Fairley is going to be getting a lot of scrutiny next Friday.
Barnhart also references the fact that AU fans have been emailing him — as they have us — about Georgia players dancing on the AU logo (Egads!) and the rough play on both sides of the ball during Saturday’s game. As if any of that makes Fairley’s shot to the back excusable.
If Fairley had snapped his own neck by ducking his head, I’m guessing Auburn fans would be upset. If an opponent had lowered his head and driven a helmet into Cam Newton’s back, I’m guessing Auburn fans would really be upset. For those reasons, Auburn fans need to stop trying to defend the indefensible.
As if a team dancing on someone’s logo is reason enough to risk injuring someone. How incredibly stupid.
No one is saying Auburn has a dirty program or that Fairley was on the Grassy Knoll in ’63. The talk centers on a particularly dirty play that deep down even Tiger fans know was ugly.
By defending Fairley’s helmet-to-back shot, it makes it appear as though AU fans would defend anything and everything done by someone in navy in orange.
“Hey, Joe Smith knocked over a liquor store!” “Well, the store was asking for it.”