Tavares Kearney no longer a Bulldog

ATHENS — Linebacker Tavares Kearney's Georgia football career is over.

Tavares Kearney, who only made headlines for his off-field activity since signing with the team in February, left the team earlier this month, Coach Mark Richt confirmed Tuesday.

"He's still in class, but I think he's going to transfer," Richt said. "Sometimes you just need a fresh start."

Kearney, who Scout.com rated the 26th-best linebacker in the nation coming out of Tucker High School, was suspended for the first game of the 2005 season after a July confrontation with a university teaching assistant during a summer school class. That suspension became moot in August when he decided to have season-ending surgery to repair an existing knee condition.

In the last month, Kearney began to miss his rehab appointments and became less of a presence around the team. Within the last two weeks, he and the team decided to part ways.

"We're paving the way for him to go to another school," Richt said.

Richt doesn't know where Kearney will eventually land, he said. Kearney nor his mother Wanda Smith could be reached for comment Tuesday evening.

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