UGA went to “extraordinary measures” to provide Alabama with extensive details about Jonathan Taylor before he signed with the Crimson Tide last January, according to a Sunday report by ESPN’s Outside the Lines.
By now, plenty are familiar with Alabama’s much-criticized addition of defensive lineman Jonathan Taylor, who was kicked off the UGA football team after being arrested on charges of domestic violence and would later befall similar fate in Tuscaloosa. On Sunday, new information surfaced that may paint the Crimson Tide in a much less-favorable light.
After dismissing Taylor before the 2014 season, UGA and athletic director Greg McGarity went to great lengths to provide Alabama with extensive details about Taylor’s police report, according to ESPN Outside the Lines’ Nicole Noren. Taylor allegedly battered his girlfriend. The UGA information given to Alabama included photos of the girlfriend’s injuries, copies of the report and — most importantly — a line of contact to both the victim and the person who originally reached out to police.
Despite Alabama athletic director Bill Battle’s insistence that his program had done due diligence in background-checking Taylor, Noren’s report indicates that may not have been the case at all. She writes (emphasis mine):
“Outside the Lines has learned that McGarity was among those Battle had spoken with — in a phone call in which McGarity confirmed details found in the police report. The call occurred just four days after Georgia had taken extraordinary measures to inform Alabama about the case, Outside the Lines has learned. Georgia officials sent photos of the woman’s injuries to University of Alabama police nearly three weeks before Taylor enrolled and also sent copies of two police incident reports involving Taylor. One report contained information not available to the public — contact information for the alleged domestic violence victim and the person who reported the incident to police. Alabama did not reach out to either person, a source told Outside the Lines, nor did it ever reach out to the district attorney presiding over the case.”
Taylor would be arrested again on domestic violence charges mere months after signing with Alabama and later dismissed. At the time, coach Nick Saban went so far as to say that Taylor was “the kind of guy that deserved a second chance,” according to ESPN.
The @OTLonESPN story also shows Jonathan Taylor pleaded guilty to misdemeanor for 2nd incident with a woman. He's now at SE Louisiana.
— Jon Solomon (@JonSolomonCBS) September 20, 2015