Florida head coach Jim McElwain pushed his normal 11:45 am meeting back to 2:30 pm in order to let the team know of the situation first.
“I wanted a time to meet with the football team before it hits the media,” a somber McElwain led off the media time with. “Will Grier won’t play this week and obviously in the near future due to taking an over-the-counter supplement that had something that was on the NCAA list that had things that you can’t have.
“He feels horrible about it. It is an honest mistake that can be prevented by checking with our medical staff. This is a mistake we will learn from, but with that I thought it would be important to bring Will up here so he can meet with you.
Grier then took the stand and could hardly speak because of his remorse.
“I took an over-the-counter supplement that had something in it,” Grier said. “I did not check with the medical staff before taking it. I really hope that people can learn from my mistake and am really sorry to everyone… just really sorry.”
McElwain has gone through suspensions in the middle of the season already and has dealt with his share of rough times in what is definitely the best season at Florida in six years. He continues to try and put the players first in all of this.
“Look guys, this is hard,” he said. “I don’t want anyone to forget we are in this for these young men. We feel for him and feel his pain. He had a chance to address the team and spoke from the heart and one of the things he expressed as well and I learned about it yesterday… it’s the opportunity you have to maybe effect somebody else’s life and understand that you can learn from this.”
While sitting out now, the school does plan on appealing his suspension, under what grounds we are not certain.
“We, as a University, will appeal this and support Will and his family as much as possible,” McElwain said. “We know there are certainly steps that go along the way when taking an over-the-counter supplement, it doesn’t matter what it is. That is the way it is.”
Now, Treon Harris will get his chance. The incumbent starter from last year was in a battle with Grier to start the season and that battle became non-extent when he too was suspended for unnamed team rules violations. He will get his chance to prove himself once again.
“We move forward from here and what it means for this football team it obviously means the next guy up,” McElwain said.