Earlier this month it was reported that Gerald Willis would be suspended for Miami’s opener against Florida A&M. As it so happens, he’s not alone.
In a press release ahead of the opener, The U confirmed that Willis as well as true freshman wide receiver Sam Bruce have been suspended for the FAMU game. Additionally, Bruce will be suspended for another two games.
Willis will be eligible to return for the FAU game next Saturday. Along with this evening’s game and the one next weekend, Bruce will be sidelined for Appalachian State and then be permitted to return for the ACC opener vs. Georgia Tech on Oct. 1.
The stated reason for the suspensions was the standard unspecified violations of team rules, although Bruce’s likely stems from an incident while he was still in high school.
It was reported in mid-July that the prized recruit was facing a suspension by The U because of a photo that showed him “brandishing a gun.” That incident this past February, which involved a male student and centered on Bruce’s ex-girlfriend, led to Bruce withdrawing from his high school, St. Thomas Aquinas in Ft. Lauderdale.
Bruce was a four-star member of The U’s most recent recruiting class, rated as the No. 11 receiver in the country and the No. 13 player at any position in the state of Florida. The 5-8, 180-pound Bruce is expected to contribute immediately, well, after his suspension ends, to the Hurricanes in both the passing and return games.
A transfer from Florida, Willis was forced to sit out last season to satisfy NCAA bylaws.
Willis left the Gators in January of 2015. A month later, he landed with the Hurricanes. He subsequently claimed he was actually dismissed by UF head coach Jim McElwain and was seeking what was described as a “run-off waiver” that would’ve given him immediate eligibility; that waiver was denied.
Willis was a four-star member of the Gators’ 2014 recruiting class, rated as the No. 6 strongside defensive end in the country. He played in five games as a true freshman last season. Willis’ stay at UF was a brief one as, a couple of months after a verbal disagreement over a pair of cleats escalated into a physical altercation with a teammate, it was announced that Willis was leaving the program.