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.
Navy has seen one of its most productive players on the defensive side of the ball play for perhaps the final time this season.
Kwazel Bertrand sustained a broken ankle in the win over Air Force last Saturday, head coach Ken Niumatalolo confirmed earlier this week. As a result, the defensive back will very likely miss the remainder of the 2015 season.
And, because he is a senior and has no other eligibility avenues to pursue, it would effectively end his collegiate career as well.
“I feel terrible for Kwazel. It’s really unfortunate any time a senior goes down with a season-ending injury,” Niumatalolo said. “Kwazel has been a really good player for us and we’re going to miss his presence out on the field.”
Bertrand started 27 games over the past three-plus seasons, including all four in 2015.
You know how I know we’re gradually creeping up on the end of another regular season? Watch lists are being whittled.
The first major honor to do so is the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, which is given out annually to the best quarterback who is a college senior or fourth-year junior. The preseason watch list was 30 quarterbacks strong; the newest list has been cut in half to 15.
The most recent list includes one of the top Heisman contenders (TCU’s Trevone Boykin) and the top two nationally in passing yards (Bowling Green’s Matt Johnson, Western Kentucky’s Brandon Doughty), as well as a quarterback who’s closing in on the all-time FBS record for rushing touchdowns (Navy’s Keenan Reynolds).
The Pac-12 leads all conferences with three watch listers, followed by two each from the AAC, ACC and Big Ten. The SEC has as many players (one, Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott) as the FCS (North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz).
Last year’s winner was Marcus Mariota of Oregon.
Trevone Boykin, TCU
Jacoby Brissett, NC State
Connor Cook, Michigan State
Brandon Doughty, WKU
Everett Golson, Florida State
Kevin Hogan, Stanford
Matt Johnson, Bowling Green
Cody Kessler, USC
Paxton Lynch, Memphis
Dak Prescott, Mississippi State
Keenan Reynolds, Navy
Nate Sudfeld, Indiana
Carson Wentz, N. Dakota State
Marquise Williams, North Carolina
Travis Wilson, Utah