Too little? Too much?
Some will argue that by not allowing quarterback Nick Marshall and cornerback Jonathan Mincy to start Auburn's season opener against Arkansas, Gus Malzahn imposed more discipline than he had to. They will be technically right. Per Auburn's drug policy, the first offense for marijuana use does not require a suspension.
Others will note that starting Jeremy Johnson, whom the coaches already want to get more involved with the offense this season, and bringing Marshall in off the bench is merely shuffling the rotation that already was going to include both in the game plan.
The debate is endless if for no other reason than fans forming their opinions based on party lines.
Never miss a local story.
I'd have preferred to see Marshall suspended for the entire game, given that he's already at Auburn by the grace of a second chance after getting kicked off the team at Georgia for alleged theft. But I'm not going to criticize or second-guess Malzahn's decision. As the Tigers' head coach, Malzahn is the one who will live with his decisions on discipline.
This was not Ray Rice dragging his unconscious girlfriend (now wife) out of an elevator after allegedly having knocked her out. This was not even driving under the influence, which society still treats with too much lenience. This was a college kid who lit up a marijuana joint in the wrong state at the wrong time.
Whether Marshall was driving impaired, we will never know. Did he just light up right before the Reynolds, Ga., police officer pulled him over for excessively tinted windows, or had he been smoking since he left Upatoi on his way home?
We'll probably never know. What we do know is that Malzahn has more information than the general public.
What impact will Marshall not starting have on the Tigers' offense? My guess is minimal if any. Not playing Mincy could have a greater impact overall.
The defense, though probably better than last year, still lacks the depth to overcome losing one of its better players.
As for the offense, I still think the Tigers will score 40 or more points against the Razorbacks, who had one of the worst defenses in the SEC last year.
As talented as Marshall is, Johnson might even be better. There's no question Johnson has the better arm and, at 6-foot-5 and 235 pounds, a more ideal build for a pocket passer. And while he's not the breakaway runner Marshall is, he's fast enough that defenses will have to account for him. That clears room for the running backs and receivers.
It's unfair to compare any untested sophomore to Cam Newton, the 2010 Heisman winner. But at least the physical attributes are similar.
"We've talked about him and his ability and how we feel about him," Malzahn said. "We feel very good about our quarterback position as a whole."
So whether Marshall's timeout lasts out one play, the entire first half or somewhere in between, it's not as if Malzahn will suddenly try to play the field position and punt game. Until someone proves otherwise, I'm convinced Malzahn is the smartest offensive mind in college football. He will find a way to move the ball and score.
As mentioned, Malzahn and offensive coordinator Rhett Lashlee already were working on ways to utilize Johnson's talents. That's smart because as the backup quarterback he's always one injury away from becoming the starter. Now, Malzahn and Lashlee have all preseason practice to develop a game plan around Johnson's considerable skills.
It's hard to imagine that Auburn's offense could be any more explosive than it already is.
The Tigers averaged 501 yards and nearly 40 points a game last season despite facing five teams that finished among the top 18 in total defense -- Florida State (3), Alabama (5), Florida Atlantic (11), LSU (15) and Mississippi State (18).
But that's very possible because there's more depth at running back and receiver and more familiarity with the offense than a year ago. The Tigers should still have a dynamic offense regardless who is at quarterback.
-- Guerry Clegg is an independent corespondent. You can write to him at email@example.com