Top recruit one of three charged in UGA locker room theft


There’s a rather bizarre story coming out of Georgia this morning as a trio of high school football players being recruited by the Bulldogs have been charged following, for lack of a better phrase, a locker room incident.

On April 7, several items, including iPhones and iPods, were stolen from the lockers of several players during what was described as an open house event on the campus.  A subsequent investigation, which included a sweep of homes in Columbus, Ga., revealed that three recruits who were guest of the school during the event allegedly stole what was more than $1,300 worth of merchandise belonging to members of the football program.

Dawgs 24/ reports that arrest warrants were issued for Deion Bonner and Marquise Hawkins, as well as an unnamed juvenile, Friday morning.  Bonner was charged with one count of theft by taking, while Hawkins was hit with two of the same count.  The juvenile was charged with three counts.

It’s unclear, the Athens Banner-Herald reports, whether any of the three have actually been arrested yet.

“[They were] over here visiting. They were down in the football area and they were guests of football operations,” university police chief Jimmy Williamson told the paper.

“I understand that we recovered all the iPods, but we didn’t recover the iPhones. They had already been sold and changed hands several times.”

Bonner, a cornerback from Columbus, was named to the “Rivals250 to watch 2012” list, and has received offers from, among others, Alabama, Auburn, Florida State, Miami and both USCs. We’re guessing that his offer from UGA may get pulled at some point in the very near future, if it hasn’t already.

Hawkins is a soon-to-be junior quarterback at Carver High School in Columbus.

UPDATED 10:18 a.m. ET: Seth Emerson of the Macon Telegraph reports via Twitter that Bonner and Hawkins “have been booked at the Clarke County jail as of 9:05” this morning.

UPDATED 1:23 p.m. ET: The Atlanta Journal Constitution writes that they have “learned that Hawkins is not a college football prospect. Marquise Hawkins is the twin brother of Carver-Columbus quarterback Marqui Hawkins, who is a 2013 recruiting prospect.”

Nebraska, UCLA among teams interested in Arizona grad transfer QB Brandon Dawkins

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One thing’s for certain: Brandon Dawkins won’t be lacking suitors, including Power Five ones, in his quest to find a new college football home.

According to Adam Rittenberg of, Florida Atlantic, Indiana, Nebraska and UCLA have all expressed interest in the quarterback. Rittenberg adds that Dawkins has plans to visit the campuses of FAU and IU in the coming weeks.

On Twitter late last month, Dawkins announced that he would be transferring from Arizona.

Dawkins is set to graduate from UA this coming May, which will make him eligible to play immediately in 2018 at wherever he lands. The upcoming season will serve as Dawkins’ final year of eligibility at the collegiate level.

Dawkins started nine games in 2016 and the first four games this past season before the force of nature known as Khalil Tate took over. All told, he played in 23 games during his four seasons in the desert. The 13 starts previously mentioned were the only ones of his UA career.

For the Wildcats portion of his playing career, Dawkins completed just over 56 percent of his 334 passes for 2,418 yards, 15 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. He ran for another 1,582 yards and 20 more touchdowns.

Fractured foot will sideline Michigan’s Tyrone Wheatley for all of spring practice

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Michigan kicked off its on-field spring season Friday, and they did so without a legacy on the practice field.

Jim Harbaugh confirmed that Tyrone Wheatley Jr. will be sidelined for all of U-M’s spring practice because of injury.  Specifically, the tight end “fractured the (metatarsal) in his foot” during that first spring practice session.

Just how Wheatley sustained the injury wasn’t detailed by the head coach.

The good news is that Wheatley, the son of former U-M running back great Tyrone Wheatley, should be fully healthy for the start of summer camp in early August.

The younger Whitley came to the Wolverines as a four-star member of U-M’s 2015 recruiting class.  After redshirting as a true freshman, Wheatley has caught three passes each of the last seasons.  On those six catches, he has totaled 61 yards and a touchdown.

Reports: Bob Diaco finalizes deal with Oklahoma

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It appears Lincoln Riley has all but officially gotten his man.

Earlier this month, reports surfaced that Bob Diaco was expected to take a job on Riley’s Oklahoma football staff. Friday, Pete Thamel of tweeted that Diaco has finalized a deal to join the football program.‘s Adam Rittenberg subsequently confirmed the initial report.

With all 10 of Riley’s on-field assistant slots filled, Diaco will serve as a defensive analyst for the Sooners.

Diaco spent the 2017 season as the defensive coordinator at Nebraska, let go after that one year following the firing of head coach Mike Riley.  Prior to that brief stint in Lincoln, he was the head coach at UConn for three seasons before being fired after going 11-26 during his time with the Huskies.

Prior to that, he was the coordinator at Notre Dame for four seasons from 2010-13.

Florida’s athletics facilities upgrade scheduled to be completed in 2021

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Dan Mullen is just breaking in his new office chair, but it will be a few more years until the new head coach to truly be able to get comfortable in his new digs. The University of Florida is scheduled to begin a complete overhaul of the athletics facilities in Gainesville this summer. When it is complete, a brand new state-of-the-art football training facility will be among the highlights of the $130 million project.

The new football facility is planned to occupy a space currently used by Florida’s baseball stadium. WOrk on the football facility will have to wait until the baseball program can move into its new stadium that is part of the renovation plans at Florida.

“With the change in facility locations for both baseball and football, we will now adjust the sequencing for these projects,” Florida AD Scott Stricklin said in a press release, according to Gridiron Now. “Baseball will need to be built first, which will allow us to repurpose the current baseball site and put the stand-alone football complex in that space.”

The new football training facility will take up a good chunk of the renovation costs with an estimated price tag of $65 million for a 130,000 square foot structure. Florida won’t have to wait until 2021 to use the facility, however, as the Gators should be expected to be able to start using the new complex as early as 2019 while the construction and renovation continues.