More than a half-dozen current Tennessee Volunteer football players were cited for alcohol-related offenses over the weekend, the Associated Press is reporting.
A police report released late Sunday night revealed that a total of seven active Vols were cited following a disturbance call at a Knoxville apartment very early that morning: linebackers Jakob Johnson, Curt Maggitt (pictured) and Jalen Reeves-Maybin were cited for providing alcohol to underage people, while offensive lineman Dontavius Blair, defensive lineman Malik Brown, cornerback Justin Coleman and defensive end Dimarya Mixon were cited for underage consumption.
As previously reported, two current players — linebacker A.J. Johnson and defensive tackle Danny O’Brien — were arrested on what were originally undisclosed charges. The police report, however, detailed those charges as well: Johnson for purchasing alcohol for a person underage and resisting arrest, O’Brien for criminal impersonation, resisting arrest and underage consumption of alcohol.
The police report also stated that Johnson, along with former UT player Dontavis Sapp, provided marijuana to underaged individuals at the party. No one was arrested on any type of drug charge as the AP wrote that “[o]fficers said they observed marijuana residue in a pipe, but ‘the pipe was destroyed by the residents of the apartment as the ownership of the apparent drug paraphernalia could not be determined.'”
In a statement released Sunday evening, head coach Butch Jones acknowledged that “[w]e are aware of the situation and are still in the preliminary stages of gathering all facts and information.” What if any punishment meted out to the nine current players involved will be announced at a later date.
A.J. Johnson — who led the Vols in tackles last season — and Coleman — started all 12 games he played — were the only 2013 starters in the group, although Maggitt started 17 games in 2011 and 2012 before missing the 2013 season due to an ACL injury he suffered late the previous year. O’Brien and Reeves-Maybin are sophomores, while Brown is a redshirt freshman. The remaining three players — Blair. Jakob Johnson and Mixon — are all members of UT’s 2014 recruiting class.
Another former Power Five player has decided to ply his football wares at a lower level of football.
The latest to do so is Romeo McKnight, with Illinois State announcing via Twitter that defensive end will be continuing his collegiate playing career for the Redbirds. Because ISU plays at the FCS level, McKnight will be eligible to play in 2018.
Including this upcoming season, the lineman will have three years of eligibility remaining.
The announcement from ISU comes a little over a week after McKnight decided to transfer from Iowa.
McKnight was a three-star member of Iowa’s 2016 recruiting class. In large part because of a knee injury that cost him the entire 2017 season, the defensive lineman never played a down for the Hawkeyes.
Another of the handful of Clemson defensive linemen who have transferred thus far this offseason could be close to finding a new home.
Reports surfaced Tuesday that Josh Belk will be visiting a pair of SEC schools this week — Georgia and South Carolina. The latter will play host to the ex-Tigers lineman on Wednesday, the former a day later on Thursday.
Belk was a four-star member of Clemson’s 2018 recruiting class. Because he enrolled early and attended classes, he’ll be forced to sit out the 2018 season to satisfy NCAA transfer rules. Beginning with the 2019 season, the South Carolina would have four years to play four seasons.
In the middle of last week, Belk announced his decision to transfer from the Tigers.
In addition to Belk, three other Tigers defensive linemen have transferred this offseason. In late January, Jabril Johnson opted to leave Clemson and ultimately ended up at West Virginia; two weeks later, Sterling Johnson took to Twitter to announce his transfer before moving on to Coastal Carolina this month. Quaven Ferguson, arrested for armed robbery in March, had announced his transfer as well prior to that off-field incident.
Yeah, this is absolutely fantastic. And extremely impressive.
Up until now, Olive Sagapolu has been mainly known to most nationally for his prowess on the football field. Entering his fourth-year season in Madison, Sagapolu has started 23 games during his time with the Badgers, including 10 in a 2017 season that saw him earn honorable mention All-Big Ten honors.
As it turns out, though, Sagapolu’s athleticism isn’t confined to merely on the field as, in this video sent out through UW’s official football Twitter account, the 6-2, 336-pound starting nose tackle lands a backflip on a beach in Hawaii.
To repeat: the man in that video weighs 336 pounds. 336 pounds.
Then again, it shouldn’t be all that surprising given the fact that Sagapolu spent a portion of his senior year at football powerhouse Mater Dei High School in California as a member of the varsity cheerleading squad. Seriously.
“In a way, (cheerleading) does help because it shows how athletic I can be and I’m getting,” Sagapolu said by way of 247Sports.com way back in August of 2015. “I mean, I’m about a 300-pound guy doing a backflip. You don’t really see that a lot. Doing these other kinds of tricks also helps with hand-eye coordination. It does help with football. …
“(People) were definitely surprised seeing me on the cheerleading team. They thought it was funny seeing… a big guy like me. For me, it is shocking to see the reaction from people’s faces. … Just the whole thing about cheerleading is very different from football. It was something I wanted to do for my senior year and have fun with it.”
A legal journey for one Tennessee football player that began last year is coming to an end.
In October of 2017, former UT running back John Kelly and current Vols linebacker Will Ignont (pictured, left) were cited for marijuana possession following a traffic stop. Kelly was the driver of the vehicle, Ignont a passenger.
Tuesday, the Knoxville News Sentinel reported, Ignont “received a pass disposition and will have his charge dismissed with court costs assessed.” Kelly, selected by the Los Angeles Rams in the 2018 NFL draft, pleaded guilty in the same court appearance.
Both Ignont and Kelly were suspended for the Kentucky game as a result of the incident, but returned the following week.
Ignont was a four-star member of the Vols’ 2017 recruiting class, rated as the No. 16 inside linebacker in the country. He played in six games as a true freshman and was credited with six tackles, one of which went for a loss.