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Police reports indicate that Smith at first covered up for McGee, telling police that his accomplice was a cousin he called "Anthony Avis." Perhaps he was studying the rental-car advertisements that day. But there has been more to the campus life of Garrick McGee.

In March 1992, he attended a dance with some other Sun Devil football players. The aforementioned Demond Sampson was one of them. So was Eddie Cade, who plays safety, and Rathan Smith, a linebacker. There was an argument.

Later McGee, Cade and Sampson were all in a car with Rathan Smith when Smith spotted one of the young men with whom they had become embroiled at the dance.

Rathan Smith, according to police reports, rolled down a window of the car and fired a shot at James A. Hale, 19, of Phoenix, hitting him in the stomach.

McGee was questioned by police and kept in reserve as a possible witness for Rathan Smith's trial, which is scheduled for later this month.

In April of this year, Tim Smith finally confessed his role in the Tempe thefts. Belatedly, he named McGee and volunteered to testify against him.

By this time, McGee was already being held in reserve as a witness in the shooting incident. It makes you wonder about the cops. Obviously, they were going to let the thefts slide as long as they needed McGee as a witness.

McGee's public reaction when it was determined he would serve only a one-game suspension is instructive.

"I deserve to be punished for what I did," he said. "But that's over now. There's nothing I can do about that."
Nobody emerges with clean hands.
Snyder, the spanking-new coach, comes out looking oily and self-serving. Harris is left with no credibility at all. If President Coor, that brass-plated hypocrite, had an ounce of courage, he would sack Harris, instanter.

But nothing will happen. They will all connive and bumble their way forward into darkness. Committees will be appointed, studies made, reports given, all while waiting for the next felony to be committed by a student-athlete.

In the meantime, the damage to Arizona State University's reputation can never be repaired. How truly terrible for everyone.

We are left with a huge university system from which no resident of the state can derive an ounce of pride.


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Tom Fitzpatrick