The Florida Gators on Thursday removed a brick honoring former tight end Aaron Hernandez from Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. Hernandez was arrested and charged with the murder of Odin Lloyd in June, and his potential involvement in a double homicide last summer is also being investigated.
Aaron Hernandez All-American brick coming down. pic.twitter.com/gCflaDAXjS— Ted Spiker (@ProfSpiker) July 25, 2013
A statement on the matter was also released:
Full statement from UAA on the Hernandez Brick's removal pic.twitter.com/8kV6AmlRbV— Julie Quittner (@JQuittner) July 25, 2013
Urban Meyer, who coached Hernandez at Florida, addressed questions about his former player during Big Ten media days. Meyer has been criticized for the way he and his staff may have handled Hernandez and others from a disciplinary perspective. Whether that's fair or not is another matter.
As for Florida, the removal of the brick serves as what it likely considers an important and symbolic step toward disassociating itself from the former All-American, but as SB Nation's Alligator Army notes, the gesture doesn't really mean anything.
I expected this to happen, because the downside is minimal and the symbolism is strong, but it really doesn't matter.— Alligator Army (@AlligatorArmy) July 25, 2013
I mean, what does Florida removing Hernandez-related stuff say? "We don't condone being charged with murder"? Did you think UF did?— Alligator Army (@AlligatorArmy) July 25, 2013