Sitting out the LSU game will be an agony for Cliff Harris.
How he handles this is probably one of the most important crossroads in his young life.
Chip Kelly handled this with consistency. He made the tough decision, and it wasn’t a football decision. He’s trying to guide and direct this young man, and set standards for his football team, regardless of the competitive disadvantage it creates.
In Kelly’s tenure the Ducks have overcome the loss of Walter Thurmond, LeGarrette Blount and Jeremiah Masoli. They survived the suspensions of LaMichael James, Rob Beard and Kiko Alonso. They’ve let players go rather than make excuses or sweep things under the rug.
The opening game with the Tigers is the highest profile, biggest opportunity the Ducks have faced outside the Rose Bowl and the National Championship Game. It cost Kelly to make this decision. Harris is one of the most dynamic players in football, the kind of guy who can change the outcome of game in six seconds. Terrence Mitchell and Kenjon Barner will have to pick up the slack.
Now that the punishment is announced, the Duck players and Duck community will have to gather around Harris and support him. It’s truly one of those times in his life he can go one way or the other.