Florida Gator Crime: Walk-On Punter Gets DUI on a Scooter
Aaron Hernandez is now a former New England Patriot, former in every sense of the word, having been scrubbed clean from the team's Web site and having his replica jersey the target of a "free exchange" campaign where Pats fans can swap out their "81 HERNANDEZ" joints for a comparable current Patriot's replica.
(For the record, "comparable" refers merely to the original price of the jersey, not to a human being of comparable caliber to Hernandez. That'd be impossible, as last I checked, O.J. Simpson was not a New England Patriot, and Satan never played football.)
But that's pro football for you. Once your usefulness runs out, they kick you to the curb, much like Hernandez allegedly kicked Odin Lloyd's lifeless body to the curb.
But college football is different. "Once a _____, always a _____" is the modus operandi, and for Hernandez, until he's proven guilty in a court of law, I would think that "Once a Gator, always a Gator" still applies, even for an alleged serial-killing thug who left after his junior year (and multiple failed drug tests along the way).
So for purposes of this story, Aaron Hernandez is still a Gator. Got it?
Because if he is still a Gator, then this allows me to say, "Boy, it sure is nice to have a crime story about a Florida Gator that doesn't involve killing people, ya know?"
In fact, this story of crime and a Florida Gator is the polar opposite crime story of every Hernandez story we've read in the past ten days, in every sense of the word, because if you had to draw up the criminal antithesis to a former All American tight end with possible gang ties murdering an acquaintance in a gangland-style execution and leaving the body to rot in an industrial park, it would probably be this:
Blond-haired, blue-eyed walk-on punter arrested for DUI when he runs a stop sign on his red scooter and politely refuses a sobriety test.
Enter Grant Van Aman.
Van Aman is a walk-on, redshirt punter from Tampa heading into his second year at the University of Florida. Early Saturday morning, Van Aman was stopped by a Gainesville cop when he rolled through a stop sign in front of the officer's car as the officer was preparing to enter the intersection. Van Aman swerved to miss the car, regained control of his rig (well, of his scooter) and then pulled out his cell phone and put it to his ear.
At that point, the Gainesville officer flipped on his lights, pulled Van Aman over and followed him into a campus garage.
The full police report has the juicy details of a traffic stop full on comedy and (thankfully) light on homicide. The highlights: