Three more Razorbacks arrested, charged, suspended

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A woeful offseason for Arkansas off the field continues Saturday, with word that a couple more Razorbacks have found themselves on the wrong side of the law.

According to ArkansasNews.com, three UA football players were arrested this afternoon and charged with residential burglary.  The three facing charges are wide receivers Marquel Wade and Maudrecus Humphrey and redshirt freshman tight end Andrew Peterson.

The trio was booked into the Washington County Detention Center on the single charge each earlier today.

There are no details available as to what led to the arrests, nor has the school commented on the development.

Wade, Humphrey and Peterson are the fourth, fifth and sixth UA football players arrested since the middle of March on charges ranging from felony theft of property (offensive lineman Jason Peacock) to possession of a controlled substance/paraphernalia (wide receiver Michael Whitehurst) to aggravated burglary and theft of property (linebacker Tyler Gilbert).  Additionally, Bobby Petrino was ousted as head coach for, well, ya know, while another wide receiver, Quinta Funderburk, and another linebacker, Brock Hamandecided to transfer out of the program.

Also, starting linebacker linebacker Alonzo Highsmith missed all of spring practice with a left pec injury, and his status for the start of the 2012 season remains up in the air.

Other than that, it’s been a relatively quiet offseason in Fayetteville.

As far as the latest players arrested are concerned, Wade, a sophomore, had eight receptions for 62 yards last year, while Humphrey, a junior, had one catch for nine yards.  Both players were listed as No. 2 wide receivers on UA’s pre-spring depth chart.

Peterson redshirted as a true freshman last season.

UPDATED 2:53 p.m. ET: According to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, Humphrey and Peterson were each charged with nine counts of burglary, while Wade was charged with one count.  It’s unclear whether all or just some of the charges are misdemeanors.

The Democrat-Gazette, citing a university police report, writes that the three are accused of stealing multiple items – including cash, laptops, DVDs and textbooks – from university dorm rooms.  Arkansas360.com notes that the value of the property allegedly stolen exceeds $4,800, which could bring the “f” word into play.

UPDATED 3:08 p.m. ET: Head coach-for-2012 John L. Smith announced shortly after the arrests surfaced that all three players have been suspended indefinitely from the football program.

“We have high standards for our student-athletes and I expect them to conduct themselves appropriately,” Smith’s statement read. “Poor conduct and misbehavior will not be tolerated and is not what we expect from the University of Arkansas football program.”

The newly-arrested trio join White Hurst and Gilbert on the suspended list.  Peacock was reinstated a couple of weeks after his arrest.

Further details have also emerged on what led to the players’ arrests:

UAPD responded to a call regarding a residential burglary from a dorm room on May 1. The female victim started she had a laptop stolen from her unlocked room, according to the report.

Over the next seven days, UAPD took a total of 10 reports from the Northwest Quad buildings. …

UAPD reviewed video from the locations, according to the report. Three suspects identified as Peterson, Humphrey and Wade walked through hallways, checked doors and entered rooms.

A clerk in the Campus Bookstore later identified Peterson, Humphrey and Wade as having been in the store “multiple times” selling textbooks. Textbooks and other stolen property also were recovered from Peterson’s suite in the Northwest Quads.

USF DB Hassan Childs in stable condition after overnight shooting incident

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USF defensive back Hassan Childs was injured in a shooting incident overnight. Fortunately, Childs is currently said to be in stable condition, according to USF.

“We are deeply concerned that an incident occurred overnight in which one of our guys, Hassan Childs, was injured in a shooting,” a statement from USF head coach Charlie Strong said. “Thankfully, Hassan is in stable condition and being well cared for, and no one else was injured. There is an ongoing investigation of the incident and we are in the process of gathering further information.”

The shooting took place off campus, but details about the incident have not been reported.

Childs played in eight games for the Bulls last year. He recorded 16 tackles and returned two punts for three yards in a backup role.

Turner Field on schedule to be ready for Georgia State season opener

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The Atlanta Braves opened the doors to their brand new baseball stadium over the weekend to fans as the baseball team gets ready to open the 2017 season in their new digs. Meanwhile, at the old home of the Braves, Georgia State University is moving along according to schedule in downsizing and renovating Turner Field to serve as the permanent home of the football program. So far, so good, as the university fully anticipates the stadium will be ready to go for the season opener on August 31 against Tennessee State.

The job that’s being done is incredible,” Athletic Director Charlie Cobb told 11Alive. “Each and every time I walk in, I see something new being done.”

Renovation and construction at Turner Field got started in February. The entire project will be done in phases as the university plans to develop around thew football stadium for an expanding university. As far as the stadium goes, the seating capacity will be retrofitted to hold a capacity of 23,000 fans. That will be the first phase of the master plan, with a second phase to complete building the rest of the stadium and add additional seating for fans.

“We plan on doing some unique things capturing the history of the stadium, but also creating a football facility that speaks to Georgia State,” Cobb said. “One of the stories we want to tell is the fact that it went from being an Olympic venue, to the home of the Braves, and now to the home of Georgia State. I think we can write that third chapter.”

Georgia State previously played its home games in the Georgia Dome, the now former home of the Atlanta Falcons of the NFL. The Falcons are also moving into a new football stadium this season. The Falcons’ new home at Mercedes-Benz Stadium will also welcome some college football action to the stadium this season with the annual Chick-fil-A Kickoff will move to the new stadium from the Georgia Dome. This year’s Chick-fil-A Kickoff features Alabama and Florida State on September 2 and Georgia Tech and Tennessee on September 4. The SEC Championship Game and the Peach Bowl will also be hosted in the new stadium and the 2018 College Football Playoff National Championship Game will be played there on January 8, 2018.

Georgia State may have their new home, but perhaps one day they will get to play in the new stadium too.

UConn hiring of Randy Edsall’s son questioned for ethics

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Football coaches having their sons on a football staff is nothing new. It’s been done for decades, and is still done to this day. That is not stopping the Office of State Ethics in Connecticut from digging into a recent hire at UConn, where the hiring of Corey Edsall has come under investigation. Edsall is the son of UConn head coach Randy Edsall. Apparently, this line of questioning has been going on for months, according to The Courant.

The Office of State Ethics is concerned whether or not the hiring of a head coach’s son as an assistant coach is in violation of the university’s Code of Ethics. According to the code, state employees are banned from using their position to benefit family members. The board has asked for an advisory opinion to address this concern and a request from the UConn associate general counsel to deny was voted down unanimously by the board. The advisory opinion is scheduled to be shared at the next board meeting on April 20.

UConn has stood by the hiring process and feels there is no violation of ethics. A statement from the university reads;

“When UConn was negotiating [Randy Edsall’s] contract, university ethics staff consulted with the Office of State Ethics on Coach Edsall’s behalf and sough an informal opinion regarding the potential hiring of the coach’s son. … In keeping with standard practice, the university presented this as a hypothetical scenario that mirrored the facts: specifically, that the university was negotiating with a candidate as that part of the negotiations included a contractual provision regarding the potential future employment at UConn of a member of the candidate’s family, who would work in the same department as the candidate.”

In the end, the hiring of Corey Edsall is unlikely to be overturned. The biggest impact this process seems to have is finalizing contracts. Randy Edsall’s contract still has yet to be officially finalized, but that appears to be a mere formality before being approved by the board. Corey Edsall’s contract is also being hung up as a result of this, but this also should be cleaned up once this ethics concern is sorted.

Corey Edsall is UConn’s tight ends coach. He spent the previous two seasons working as a staff member at Colorado as a graduate assistant working with the defense. The 24-year old has also spent two summers working as a scouting intern with the New England Patriots and Philadelphia Eagles in 2013 and 2014, respectively.

Florida State planning new facility to catch up with Clemson

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Florida State completed a major facility overhaul not even three years ago. But the thing about arms races is that when someone pulls ahead of you it means you are behind.

And Clemson officially pulled ahead earlier this year with the opening of its glistening, slide-equipped new home.

As such, Jimbo Fisher told reporters Friday that Florida State now has plans to construct its own standalone facility, going as far as meeting with an architect.

“We need room. We need meeting space, player development areas. You’ve got to have those areas and also to show off your history. That’s what Florida State is known for, being a great football program,” Fisher told ESPN. “You can never stand still. If you’re not evolving and moving, people are going to bypass you. You’ve got to keep going. The great programs never settle. We’re always looking for that edge. It’s going to help recruiting. It’s going to help player development. We get a lot of guys that are three-and-out, so we’ve got to have space for them to get them developed as quickly as we can so we can get production out of them.”

While saying that it’s a “competitive” race and not an arms race, Fisher also tried to sell that the plans for the ‘Noles’ new home were unrelated to Clemson’s new facility.

“I don’t care what they’ve got,” Fisher said. “I’m worried about what we’ve got. If I don’t think it’s going to make a difference in our program for these kids to develop as people, students and players, I won’t ask. I didn’t grow up with a lot. I was taught if you need it, do what you’ve got to do to be successful but don’t waste. I’m not going to do that. But there’s things you’ve got to have to be successful and that’s the next step, in my opinion.”