Strickland, a 17-year-old offensive lineman who graduated early from Berrien County High School in Nashville in order to participate in spring practice, was charged with possession of a fraudulent I.D., a misdemeanor. An arrest report was issued for Strickland and 12 other university students late Friday afternoon after a university police department investigation that began on Feb. 26 with a call from a U. S. postal inspector in Arizona.
Strickland will not miss any game or practice time due to the arrest but will be required to complete what head coach Mark Richt referred to as “in-house” discipline, Richt said after practice Monday. In-house discipline generally means punishment running and community service.
“We’ll wear him out pretty good, and I know having to tell daddy that wasn’t any fun either,” Richt said. “We’ll get him straightened out.”
Freshman linebacker Akeem Hebron was suspended for the first two games of next season after being arrested on charges of underage possession of alcohol. Strickland is the third Bulldog known to have been arrested since the end of the 2006 season. Offensive lineman Ian Smith will miss the first five games of 2007 after his second alcohol-related arrest.
In Strickland’s case, a postal inspector called the university police department and told a representative that fake I.D.s were being created at the university and mailed across the country, according to a university police report. Two university students, not Strickland, were charged with possession of fraudulent I.D.s with intent to distribute.
Strickland was not allowed to speak to the media on Monday. Richt had no reservations about allowing the youngster to practice before turning himself in to police, he said.
Strickland planned to turn himself in Monday night or today, Richt said. According to the Clarke County sheriff office’s Web site, he had not done so by 7:45 p.m. Monday.
“It was just a very, very poor decision,” Richt said. “Until everything is done legally, I probably should make any comment, but, yeah, young people do some dumb things, that’s for sure.”