HOOVER, Ala. — Georgia football coach Kirby Smart cleared the air on the timeline involving the dismissal of Jeremiah “J.J.” Holloman.
Smart said he dismissed Holloman soon after confirming the junior receiver struck his former girlfriend in April of 2018.
“ Early June were were made aware of a police report, and we took immediate action,” Smart said Tuesday morning at SEC Media Days at the Wynfrey Hotel. “It was very unfortunate. We wish J.J. nothing but the best. ”
The victim didn’t file a police report until June 2, 2019, more than a year after the incident occurred on the day after the 2018 G-Day Game at 4 a.m. on April 22.
Holloman agreed to speak with the University of Georgia Police Department on June 6.
Later that day, without legal representation, Holloman confessed to striking his former girlfriend after an argument grew physical in his dorm room.
Holloman’s former girlfriend also accused him of choking her during the incident. Holloman told police that injuries related to the victim’s neck were a result of consensual sexual activity the previous night.
“Jeremiah Holloman no longer represents the University of Georgia football program,” Smart said on June 21. “We expect every member of our team to uphold the highest standards and values of the University of Georgia and Georgia football. It is disappointing when this does not happen.”
Holloman’s dismissal accentuated what had already been a bumpy offseason for the two-time defending SEC Eastern Division champs.
The Bulldogs’ spring and summer months have been filled with challenges and hurdles, from coaching changes to player attrition.
Key backups Justin Fields (QB, Ohio State) and Luke Ford (TE, Illinois) announced transfers immediately following Georgia’s 28-21 Sugar Bowl loss to Texas.
Smart learned last December that defensive coordinator Mel Tucker was leaving to become the head coach at Colorado.
Former UGA offensive coordinator Jim Chaney split for the Tennessee OC job the second week of January, nearly doublings salary to take a parallel position.
The spring football session had its share of distractions, as well.
A string of six arrests in six weeks raised Smart’s ire. While Smart didn’t deem any of the misdemeanor incidents serious enough to warrant a public suspension, the fourth-year head coach made it clear he had reached his limit.
“I’m just extremely disappointed that we’ve got guys that won’t follow the rules and the law and make good decisions,” Smart said on April 2, “and if they don’t, they’re not going to be here.”
Smart held true to his word upon learning that Holloman’s domestic violence incident represented a breach of team rules. This, despite the fact the victim has not wanted to press charges and the case has remained inactive.
Georgia has amped up its leadership initiatives this offseason, Smart surely looking to ensure the team chemistry remain strong.
The Bulldogs leadership committee traveled to Florida last month for a beach getaway and a meeting with a renowned mental strength coach.
Senior J.R. Reed, who along with quarterback Jake Fromm and offensive tackle Andrew Thomas is in Hoover representing Georgia at the SEC Media Days, said it was a successful venture.
“Everything has been going great, we had a leadership retreat, I know some people saw that, where we came together as a group (in Florida),” Reed said during a community service appearance at Camp Sunshine.
“Honestly we’re bonding together more and more each day as a team, and becoming more of a brotherhood.”
Jeremiah “J.J.” Holloman timeline
(per details obtained through UGA Police Report)
April 22, 2018 — Incident occurs in Holloman’s dorm room, victim goes to hospital and receives six stitches, tells hospital personnel she slipped in shower.
June 2, 2019 — Victim goes to UGA Police Department to report incident with Holloman, tells police she does not want to press charges.
June 6, 2019 — Holloman agrees to interview with UGA Police, admits to striking former girlfriend in April 22, 2018 incident.
June 11, 2019 — UGA Police report is dated as being filed and reviewed.
June 21, 2019 — Smart announces Holloman has been dismissed from Georgia football team.
June 26, 2019 –– Holloman enters NCAA transfer portal.
DawgNation at SEC Media Days