Georgia received some much welcomed news Tuesday with word that linebacker Jarvis Jones has been cleared of any wrong doing regarding any alleged use of receiving improper benefits and will eligible to play for the Bulldogs when they open the season Sept. 3 at the Georgia Dome against Boise State.
According to an official statement from UGA, the Bulldog compliance office was notified late Monday by the NCAA that it had reviewed the University's report on Jones and found no no rules were violated.
According to the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer, an unauthorized bank account by the Columbus Parks and Recreation Department were used to pay for flights for Jones to and from Los Angeles, who at the time was a member of a city-funded, Nike sponsored AAU basketball team at the time.
That was obviously not the case.
"I appreciate the work of our compliance office for its time and effort in providing a thorough, comprehensive report and I'm thankful for the timely manner in which the NCAA reviewed and evaluated all the facts to reach a decision," head coach Mark Richt said in a statement. "We're ready to move on with preparations for our season opener."
For Georgia, the news could not have come at a better time regarding Jones, who has been working with the first team at Sam linebacker thus far in preseason.
"I'm going to go out there and play my heart out, just like the rest of the guys," Jones said during his last interview in April. "All of us want to make plays; that's what we're going to try and do. I think we can be a dominating defense."
One of the state's most touted prospects in 2008, Jones saw significant action as a freshman with Southern Cal, playing strong side linebacker, recording 13 tackles, including 1.5 for loss in USC's first eight games before his injury.
He sat out last year to satisfy the NCAA's transfer rules.
Tight end Aron White, who has had to go against Jones in practice on more than one occasion, said he believes Jones will make a tremendous impact this fall.
"He's just a tremendous athlete and this guy hits like a rock. We went Red Zone the other day and when he hit me the ball probably popped 50 feet in the air," White said. "I somehow still caught the ball on the bounce but I was still delirious. He's just a heavy hitter and he's got deceiving strength. He's going to be a tremendous asset for us this year."
Anthony Dasher is the managing editor for UGASports
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