There’s been a potentially significant development in one of the day’s most noteworthy college football stories.
Earlier Tuesday, reports surfaced that two current members of the South Carolina football program, fifth-year senior linebacker Skai Moore and redshirt junior wide receiver Deebo Samuel, as well as a former Gamecock, Jalen Dread, had been accused in a criminal complaint filed in connection to the alleged assault of a man at a Columbia bar very early Saturday morning. Video surveillance of the alleged incident is expected to be made available to police at some point; it’s unclear if any of the players have spoken to police as they were not at the bar when officers arrived.
As far as Will Muschamp is concerned, at least one of his players will not be seen on the video when it is reviewed by police investigators as Samuel told his head coach that he wasn’t even at the bar where the alleged assault occurred.
“We’re still kind of gathering the facts. I’ve been out of town, so I’ve been out of pocket,” Muschamp said according to the Columbia State. “We are still gathering information. I have talked to Deebo Samuel and he was not at the establishment so there’s an incorrect report and that’s some irresponsible journalism, in my opinion, but it is what it is.”
Witnesses told police that all three of those involved in the alleged assault of a 24-year-old Marine who served in Afghanistan were Gamecock football players. None of the trio mentioned in the complaint filed with the Columbia Police Department have been charged. An investigation into the alleged incident is ongoing.
Last season, Samuel led USC with 59 receptions for 783 yards. Moore led the Gamecocks in tackles from 2013-15, earning second-team All-SEC honors in 2015, before missing the 2016 season because of a neck injury. He announced in January that he would be returning to Columbia for one final season.
Dread played linebacker for the Gamecocks last season but opted to transfer from the football program in February.
There was good news and potentially not-so-good news on the Scott Pagano front Thursday for Oregon.
A transfer from Clemson this offseason, Pagano suffered a broken bone in his foot in the Tigers’ mid-November win over Pitt that forced him to miss the remainder of the regular season. After moving on to the Ducks as a graduate transfer in mid-April, UO’s medical staff decided he needed to undergo surgery to repair the damage in his foot.
First-year head coach Willie Taggart Thursday declared the defensive lineman ahead of schedule in his recovery from the medical procedure, but didn’t guarantee he’d be on the field for the 2017 opener.
“Something he had that he needed to be corrected,” Taggart said of the surgery according to oregonlive.com. “He’s ahead of schedule right now. I don’t like putting certain weeks on guys because everybody heals differently.
“He’s one of those kids that has been rehabbing his tail off and is itching to get back out there. He’s ahead of schedule right now. Hopefully he’s there for the Southern Utah game.”
Coming out of high school in Hawaii as a four-star 2013 recruit, Pagano was rated as the No. 24 tackle in the country and the No. 2 player at any position in the state. He started 13 games the past two seasons, four of which came in 2016.
Before opting for UO, Pagano had taken an official visit to Oklahoma as he had whittled his to-do list down to those two. Arkansas, Notre Dame and Texas were also among the lineman’s five allotted official visits in his second round of collegiate recruiting.
There’s been a slight tweak to Miami’s defensive secondary ahead of the start of summer camp.
In a press release that consisted all of two sentences, the Hurricanes announced that Ryan Mayes is no longer a member of Mark Richt’s football program. No reason was given for the separation, nor is it known whether the move was voluntary or involuntary.
A three-star member of The U’s 2014 recruiting class, Mayes was rated as the No. 48 cornerback in the country and the No. 92 player at any position in the state of Florida. He held offers from, among others, Boston College and Syracuse.
As a true freshman, Mayes played in three games, then saw action in just one game the following season as he took a redshirt. In 2016, the defensive back played in 11 games, mainly on special teams.
Prior to his departure, the redshirt junior was expected to fill a reserve role in the Hurricanes’ secondary.
Former Oregon wide receiver Darren Carrington‘s father confirmed his son of the same name was headed to Utah on Wednesday, and the head coach of the team in question has now double confirmed it.
But just because Carrington is at the University of Utah does not make him a Ute. Not yet.
Speaking at Pac-12 media days, Utah head coach Kyle Whittingham said Carrington is in school but has hurdles to clear to join the team.
“Not just yet. There’s a process that has to occur, some things that have to transpire and we’ve just got to wait for all that to kind of take place,” Whittingham said, via Deseret News.
It’s not sure what “things” have to transpire and when that is expected to happen; Whittingham couldn’t be sure Carrington would be with the team when camp opens Friday.
“Right now I don’t have a good answer because everything’s being sorted through right now,” Whittingham said.
Carrington will be immediately eligible to play as a graduate transfer. He caught 43 passes for a team-leading 606 yards and six touchdowns last season. Utah’s leading returning receiver, junior Raelon Singleton, nabbed 27 passes for 464 yards and four scores a year ago.
OJ Simpson is one of the greatest Trojans of all-time. A unanimous two-time All-American, Simpson won the 1968 Heisman Trophy and was a member of USC’s 1967 national championship team.
OJ Simpson will also soon be a free man.
Granted parole from his felony armed robbery conviction last week, Simpson will be free on Oct. 1. The question, then, if you’re a reporter at Pac-12 media days is whether or not USC will welcome back one of its most accomplished — if not favorite — sons.
The answer? Uh, no.
To be clear, Simpson has not indicated he wanted to be part of USC football again. The 70-year-old indicated to the parole board he would return to Florida if granted his freedom.
USC has distanced itself from Simpson ever since his 1994 double-murder trial, but his Heisman Trophy remains on display at Heritage Hall.