ATHENS, Ga. — Georgia junior linebacker Darius Dewberry has been suspended for the first two games of the season, coach Mark Richt announced Monday.
The fight came the night after the USA Today Coaches’ Poll named the Bulldogs as the best in the nation going into the 2008 season, which begins Aug. 30 for the team.
Dewberry admitted to Richt that he was responsible for causing damage to property at St. Mary’s Hospital Saturday morning after two Georgia players were hospitalized after they were hit with bottles in a brawl at a downtown club, Richt said.
Security guards told police a man damaged a parking-control arm at the garage entrance, and four large potted shrubs nearby were also turned over.
Dewberry will repay the cost of the damage, Richt said. He’ll also have 20 hours of community service and early-morning running.
Dewberry is the sixth Georgia player to be suspended or dismissed from the team this offseason. Snapper Jeff Henson and defensive back Donavon Baldwin were suspended indefinitely after incidents this weekend.
“It’s certainly been a distraction,” Richt said.
Bulldogs Donavon Baldwin and Marcus Dowtin apparently were hit in the head with bottles in the early-morning dust-up, Athens-Clarke police said.
At least two other Georgia players accompanied their injured teammates to St. Mary’s Hospital - along with former Bulldog Michael Lemon, who later was arrested outside the hospital for underage possession of alcohol.
No arrests have been made in connection with the brawl, though the team suspended Baldwin indefinitely Saturday night.
Baldwin, a junior free safety who faces a one-game suspension for a DUI arrest in January, told an officer at the hospital that he didn’t see who threw the bottle that cut his neck and ear, according to police.
Dowtin, a freshman linebacker, told the officer he fell, but earlier had told a nurse he was hit in the mouth with a bottle, according to the officer’s report.
Lemon, a former defensive end, was kicked off the team last month for an aggravated battery charge stemming from a fight in June.