However, with previous miscreants Jason Keyter and Wendell Sailor both ending up with 2 year bans there was clearly a precedent for such a decision. Two years away from the sport could well be career-ending - and it hardly helps his rehabilitation that he won't even be allowed to coach youngsters, if I understand the ban correctly.
Mind you, someone ought to be testing whatever Brian O'Driscoll has been drinking of late.
"Knowledge is knowing that tomato is a fruit, while wisdom is knowing not to put it in a fruit salad," he said, when questioned about Martin Johnson.
Eric Cantona would have been proud.