Not surprisingly, there’s been another development in one of the odder stories of this or any other offseason.
Thursday morning, Judge Margaret Taylor, the Tampa Bay Times reports, issued an order that voluntarily disqualifies her from a case involving USF football player LaDarrius Jackson. The Bulls defensive end was arrested Monday night on charges of sexual battery and false imprisonment.
At Jackson’s initial court appearance Wednesday morning, Taylor, a USF graduate, ripped into both the player and, in particular, his head coach, Charlie Strong. In a blistering diatribe that quickly went viral, the judge questioned whether the head coach has control of his players off the field because of two recent violent felony arrests as well as imploring Strong “to think long and hard about whether being head coach at USF is a good fit for you before any other members of this community have to suffer at the hands of one of your players.”
The public tongue-lashing forced Strong to issue a public statement defending himself and his football program, saying in part that “[w]e have wonderful young men in the USF football program who choose to do the right thing every day.”
Prior to the judge’s order earlier today, Jackson’s public defender had a motion ready to have her recused. Those attorneys are also questioning the $102,500 bail set by Judge Taylor; a new judge will hear arguments on that issue later this week.
As it stands now, Jackson remains in jail. He also remains indefinitely suspended from Strong’s football team.