As expected, Illinois has addressed the legal elephant squatting in the middle of their football locker room.
Wednesday morning, three Illini football players, offensive linemen Darta Lee and Howard Watkins and wide receiver Zarrian Holcombe, were arrested on charges of home invasion and armed robbery. Not long after the arrests came to light, Lovie Smith issued a statement addressing the situation.
In the statement, Smith revealed that Lee and Holcombe had already been suspended prior to the arrests for violating unspecified team rules. Those two will remain suspended.
Additionally, Watkins has been indefinitely suspended from all team activities as well.
“These allegations, if true, fail to live up to the standards we expect of our student-athletes,” the head coach said. “We continue to gather information and will take appropriate steps based upon what we learn.”
Lee started two of the six games he played his true freshman season last year, while Holcombe played in seven his first season with the Illini. Watkins was a three-star 2017 signee who enrolled early at the school.