ATHENS, Ga. — A second player in three weeks was arrested for misdemeanor traffic violations Wednesday when offensive lineman Vince Vance was taken into custody by the Athens-Clarke County police for driving without a license.
Coach Mark Richt said Vance, 22, had a learner’s permit, which would allow him to operate the vehicle if another adult was present, but that was not the case at the time of the arrest. The violation is the second in the past year for Vance, who was arrested on a similar charge last November.
Richt said the arrest will not affect Vance’s playing time in this week’s game against Florida.
“It’s not affecting his playing status at all,” Richt said.
Richt said further punishment is being handled in-house but said that the team’s focus on these minor traffic offenses has increased in recent weeks.
Three weeks ago, cornerback Vance Cuff was arrested for driving a scooter with a suspended license, and linebacker Rennie Curran also had a bench warrant issued for him after he failed to appear in court following a speeding violation.
“I can’t even tell you what we’ve been trying to get done in regard to making sure these things don’t happen,” Richt said.
The problem, Richt said, is that rules are often nearly impossible to enforce. While the school tries to ensure each player has a valid license, situations like the one faced by Vance result from players not having the proper class of license, which is forcing Richt to take a firm stand on the issue.
“My feeling is, every single Georgia football player must have not only a valid license, but a Class C license,” Richt said.
Still, Richt said, it remains difficult to keep tabs on any potential moving violations, parking tickets and other minor issues that can, if ignored, become more serious.
“I can’t snap my finger and get it done overnight,” Richt said. “If a kid gets a ticket and he can’t take care of it quickly enough, he could find himself with an issue there. So it’s a real pain in the rear, quite frankly.”
Happy to be back
Joe Cox is making his first start in a Georgia-Florida game this season, and he’s happy to be doing it in Jacksonville, Fla.
There was a great deal of debate about the future of the game in recent months, but a deal to keep the game in Jacksonville appears imminent, and that’s just the way it should be, Cox said.
“I know there are people that think this game needs to come to Atlanta, but it doesn’t matter because wherever you are, it’s going to be a 50-50 crowd, and it’s always really cool to see it like that,” he said. “Two teams that are big rivals, they get to share the stadium, and it’s one of the best games in college football and it’s always fun to be a part of.”