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East Carolina mourns loss of former Pirate Domonique Lennon in fatal shooting

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The extended East Carolina football family is in mourning following the passing of one of their own.

Over the weekend, Domonique Lennon was shot and killed following an incident outside of a Raleigh, NC restaurant. He was just 24 years old.

Witnesses described hearing upwards of 15 gunshots, with police arriving at 9:45 p.m. Friday night. No suspect or suspects are in custody as police continue to investigate the fatal shooting, which they believe involved more than one shooter.

It’s unknown if Lennon was the target or just caught up in the crossfire.

Lennon played defensive back for the Pirates from 2011-15. He played in 26 games his last two seasons with ECU, starting 14 of those contests in 2014.

“East Carolina University, the athletics department and Pirate football program are saddened by the tragic passing of Domonique Lennon,” a statement from the school began. “He made a positive impact on many people during his time as a student-athlete at ECU and earned the respect of both his teammates and coaches. We extend our condolences to Domonique’s family, friends and all those who knew and loved him.”

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help start a college fund for Lennon’s young son Landon. You can reach it by clicking HERE.

Walk-on USF TE arrested on misdemeanor fraud, theft charges

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Another day, another resetting of ye olde arrest ticker.

According to multiple media outlets, South Florida’s Adrian Palmore was arrested this past Monday on one count of fraudulent use of a credit card and count of petit theft.  The tight end’s arrest came at a Tampa-area IHOP.

From WFLA-TV:

In the arrest report obtained by News Channel 8, officers say Palmore tried to pay for a meal with a credit card that the victim, Rigoberto Torres Meza, claimed was stolen.

Before the meal was served, police say the victim contacted the restaurant, telling them the card had been stolen after his bank told him that someone tried to use the card.

The report went on to say that Palmore had initially said a friend gave him the card. Palmore then admitted he took the card after finding it at school and decided to use it “due to being hungry.

“We are aware of the situation and are in the process of collecting information,” the school said in a statement. “The student-athlete has been removed from participation in team activities at this time.”

Palmore is a walk-on who played in one game last season.  He’s also the third Bull to be arrested this offseason, Charlie Strong’s first as USF head coach.

Defensive end LaDarrius Jackson was arrested in May on charges of sexual battery and false imprisonment.  Not long after, he was arrested again on the same charges and dismissed by Strong.

Bulls defensive back Hassan Childs was hospitalized in stable condition after being shot in late March.  A day later, Childs was arrested and charged with three counts of aggravated assault and one count of misdemeanor marijuana possession in connection to a road-rage incident the night he was shot.  Childs allegedly pointed a gun at least twice at a man, Jovanni Jimenez, and his family and was ultimately shot three times by Jimenez.

Childs too was dismissed from the football program.

UCF kicker to keep YouTube channel, put fate in NCAA’s hands

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One college football player has decided against backing down from the overbearing and overreaching monolith that is the NCAA.

Central Florida kicker Donald De La Haye has a rather entertaining YouTube channel that’s so popular it’s working its way towards 70,000 subscribers.  As a result of that popularity, De La Haye has generated some revenue from the site, revenue that the native of Costa Rica said he would be sending back to his financially-struggling family.

This past week, word leaked that UCF’s compliance department had informed De La Haye that, if he continues to accept money from the YouTube channel, he’d risk being declared ineligible by the NCAA.  This past weekend, the player essentially decided to leave it up to the NCAA to determine whether or not he’ll be allowed to have a future in collegiate sports.

And he did so via, yep, a very passionate video posted to his YouTube channel.

“It’s been extremely tough these past few days.  It’s been very hard,” De La Haye said at one point. “I feel like I’m at trial right now. I didn’t do anything bad. …

“I’ve decided I’m going to continue making my videos.  … Gonna upload regularly to this channel. I’m not demonitizing.  I refuse to.  So it’s out of my hands now.  The decision is in the NCAA’s hands, whether they wanna suspend me or whether they wanna let me do me.”

God bless you, Donald.  You have more supporters than you’ll ever know, supporters that hope your fight will, ultimately, lead to some semblance of equity and fairness for student-athletes.

UConn dismisses highly-touted 2015 signee

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Just one member of UConn’s 2015 recruiting class was rated higher than Nazir Williams.  A little over two years later, Williams is gone.

In a press release over the weekend, the football program announced that “Williams has been dismissed due to violation of Division of Athletics policy.” No specifics were given as to what triggered the dismissal.

The move does, though, comes several months after Williams was arrested on multiple charges, including weapons in a motor vehicle, possession of less than half an ounce of marijuana and possession of alcohol by a minor.  The weapon turned out to be an unmarked BB-gun.

A three-star 2015 signee, Williams was rated as the No. 41 player at any position in the state of New Jersey.  Only David Ryslik was rated higher by 247Sports.com than Williams was in the Huskies’ class that year, although the linebacker held just two other offers from FBS programs — Buffalo and Temple.

After taking a redshirt as a true freshman, Williams didn’t see the field at all in 2016.

Week 1 meeting between Central Florida and FIU shifted to Thursday

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You know you’re in a slow time for college football news when a relatively minor schedule change is popping onto the radar.

Case in point comes out of the Sunshine State on Friday afternoon as the schools and network involved have announced that Central Florida’s Week 1 opener hosting Florida International has been moved from Saturday to Thursday, August 31st. The game is set to kickoff at 6 p.m. ET in Orlando and will be televised on CBS Sports Network.

So yes, if you can’t wait to watch Butch Davis’ coaching debut with the Panthers then you’ll be happy to note you won’t have to wait quite as long as you once did.

The two day shift up forward helps to space out college football’s first full opening weekend even more as well. The UCF-FIU will be the 15th game to kickoff on Thursday and will form a double-header on CBSSN with a Memphis-Louisiana Monroe tilt later in the evening. There are not a ton of notable matchups on the slate for the 31st but the first meeting of Davis and the Knights’ Scott Frost might be in the top five even if it is miles behind something like Ohio State’s opener at Indiana on the same night.

But hey, college football is college football and there’s no better time to note that than the heart of the offseason when you would love to see some action on the gridiron no matter who is involved.