After a felony charge was reduced to a misdemeanor last month, it was reported that the door was left slightly open for Michael Holmes to return to Virginia Tech.
Apparently, that same door has been slammed shut by the university in a move that may or may not be related to the off-field legal issue.
What is known is that, per the Newport News Daily Press‘ David Teel, Tech athletic director Jim Weaver has confirmed that the running back has been “permanently separated” from the school. A student judicial board made the decision to dismiss Holmes, although, due to student privacy laws, Weaver is unaware of exactly why the player was given the boot.
“I don’t know exactly what the situation is,” Weaver said according to the Daily Press. “This is a difficult one to communicate. … I can only tell you what has occurred.”
The running back was initially charged with two counts of simple assault and one count of malicious wounding following an April incident. Holmes’ current girlfriend was attacked by his former girlfriend as well as a female cousin, while Holmes’ male cousin joined the fray and suffered multiple injuries at the hands of the player.
Holmes had claimed self-defense, a tactic that the Commonwealth’s Attorney at least partially agreed with as the two simple assault charges were dropped and the malicious wounding, a felony, was reduced to misdemeanor assault and battery. As part of the plea agreement, Holmes received a suspended 12-month jail sentence and probation as well as being ordered to pay more than $13,000 in restitution to one of the victims.
It was reported last month that Weaver and head coach Frank Beamer were on the verge of reinstating Holmes. The judicial board’s decision took that option out of their hands.
After rushing for 280 yards as a freshman last season, Holmes was viewed as a player who would’ve been expected to carry a more significant role in Tech’s running game this season.
Baylor’s on-going scandal over reported sexual assaults looks like it is about to get even uglier.
Former head coach Art Briles has filed a lawsuit for libel and slander against three school regents and a vice president, according to the Associated Press, accusing them of falsely stating he knew of sexual assaults by players and didn’t report them.
Perhaps most eyebrow-raising is that the lawsuit also accuses the officials of conspiring to keep him from getting another coaching job. Briles has been connected to openings such as the one at Houston but school officials quickly denied reports that he was formally considered for the vacant head coaching spot.
Briles was fired in the spring by Baylor after an investigation from law firm Pepper Hamilton determined the school mishandled reports of alleged sexual assaults, some of which involved numerous football players. The coach denied he knew about the alleged assaults but several regents — including the three named in the recent lawsuit — told the Wall Street Journal on the record that Briles failed to report alleged assaults.
While the football team may be looking to move on from all of this with the recent hire of Matt Rhule as the new head coach, it appears the school itself will continue to deal with the fallout from one of the worst scandals in college football history.
College football recruiting has kicked into full gear the past few weeks and one of the more interesting decisions this month that could have a big impact on next season is finding out which school former Baylor quarterback Jarrett Stidham will be playing for in 2017.
The signal-caller threw for 12 touchdowns and over 1,200 yards after taking over as the Bears starter midway through last year but he opted to transfer away from the program this summer when Art Briles was fired as the result of a sexual assault scandal at the school. While many have considered SEC schools such as Auburn, Texas A&M and Florida to be the favorites to land the coveted junior college QB, there may be another school that is in the running too: whichever program hires Baylor offensive coordinator Kendal Briles.
“KB is my dude,” Stidham told ESPN.com. “I’m super tight with him. I still talk to him all the time. I’m still waiting to see what happens with him and where he might go and just take it into consideration.”
It remains to be seen if new head coach Matt Rhule will retain the younger Briles but it seems unlikely given the events in Waco the past six months and the school likely wanting a complete divorce from the previous regime. Kendal Briles own job prospects seem a bit unknown given everything at play but it could be an interesting combination for a head coach looking to jump start an offense.
There’s always talk of package deals in college basketball but this would be a potential one in football that may draw some interest.
And that’s the way it was, at least as it pertains to the Florida portion of Jordan Cronkrite‘s collegiate playing career.
Thursday, the Gators announced that Cronkrite has been granted permission to pursue other opportunities. The release from his scholarship will afford the running back the opportunity to transfer elsewhere.
If that elsewhere is at the FBS, the sophomore would have to sit out the 2017 season. He’d then have two seasons of eligibility remaining beginning in 2018.
Cronkrite was a four-star 2015 recruit who was rated as the No. 34 player at any position in the state of Florida.
As a true freshman, Cronkrite ran for 157 yards and three touchdowns on 44 carries. This past season, he carried the ball 31 times for 145 yards and a touchdown. His 20 receptions were fourth on the Gators.