PHOTO: USA Today Sports
Clemson and Georgia meet for the second straight year on opening weekend of the college football season in what promises to be "must see TV". Last year, it was Clemson who won a close game at home. This year the game will be played in Athens.
Two weeks ago, Mark Richt and Georgia kicked starter Josh Harvey-Clemons off their team. Now it's Clemson that has taken disciplinary action against four of their team members, suspending all of them for the season opener.
Defensive end Corey Crawford (10.5 TFL, 2.5 sacks) offensive linemen David Beasley and Shaq Anthony and defensive back Gary Peters have all been suspended. Crawford started 12 games last season, Beasley started seven games at left guard, Anthony started three games at right tackle and Peters saw action in ten games.
Crawford and Beasley were expected to be starters heading into the 2014 season. The good news for Clemson is that, much like Georgia with Harvey-Clemons, they have plenty of lead time to deal with the issue of preparing to play without these four players.
The line of scrimmage will be one of the most interesting battles to watch during this game. Georgia struggled in the season opener against Clemson's defensive line. Now Georgia must replace three offensive linemen and Clemson will be without starter Crawford. On the flip side, Georgia has brought in a new defensive staff and will undoubtedly have a different look as Clemson's offense prepares without Beasley and Anthony.
The loss of players on both sides of this rivalry makes for interesting conversation heading up to the game and the coaches will be working overtime figuring out how to compensate for their early losses. No matter how you slice it, Dabo can't be happy with having to hand out these suspensions with a big game looming in Clemson's future as he hopes that this will serve as a learning tool for the rest of the team with the majority of the off-season still ahead for the Tigers.