Marcus Sales gets jammed up in the traffic stop from hell and the question becomes: Does Doug Marrone have to suspend him for the season? Back in April, heading into the Syracuse Spring Game, The Fizz asked whether this was a new beginning for the Orange wideout. Sales was coming off an explosive Pinstripe Bowl, was penciled in as a starter and had three years of reps with Ryan Nassib. But as we noted at the time, “The problem with Sales has never been when he’s on the field, it’s just getting him there.”
So, will The Dougie allow him to get on the field? At the moment, it’s hard to imagine a Syracuse player being allowed to face felony drug charges a month before the season begins and still suiting up this year. Then again, maybe as the case unfolds it’s his brother that takes most of the responsibility and the ugliness of the incident begins to soften.
Here’s the biggest problem: No matter who takes ownership of the narcotics, Marcus was the one driving, running the red, admitting to drinking alcohol, and without his driver’s license. You can’t escape those facts.
Not to dismiss responsibility of drinking and driving, but if Marcus was not deemed over the legal limit, the real issue here is the drugs in the vehicle (which reads like an episode of Cops).
“Police found three knotted pieces of plastic containing a green plant-like substance that tested positive for marijuana, a plastic baggie containing 180 Lortab (hydrocodone and acetaminophen) tablets, three digital scales, a plastic cup with gin and other baggies with devil, superman and pit bull insignias on them.
Marcus Sales had $250 in cash in his possession and Michael Sales Jr. had $747 in cash, police reported.”
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We know this: Marcus is guilty of some awful decision-making. As a high-profile student-athlete in your hometown, you just simply can’t be driving your brother around town on drug runs. You obviously can’t have liquor in the car. And if you have to ask yourself if you’re doing something wrong, you most likely are.
This was a difficult weekend for Syracuse football after Prince-Tyson Gulley’s stabbing (although PTG told The Fizz over the weekend he was out of the hospital and recovering well). But eventually as the Sales case gets sorted out, Marrone will have to decide how tough he is on Marcus. Maybe he’s not suspended for the season, but wasn’t Brice Hawkes dismissed from the program completely for less than this?
The Dougie might conclude Marcus was sucked into a bad situation with his brother and decide a half-season suspension for his starting wide receiver is enough of a punishment. But for a coach who prides himself on running a disciplined program, it’ll be hard for DM not to come down hard on his wideout in a situation as ugly as this. Sales might not done for the whole season, but he’ll definitely sit for part of it. How big a part is up to Marrone.