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Monday meetings could determine fates of Texas Longhorns players
Are all the players currently thought dismissed really going to be gone?
In the midst of all the reports of Texas Longhorns players being dismissed from the football team, there has been a notable lack of any type of confirmation from the school, especially an official release.
It's possible that Texas could still issue a release late Friday evening, as such timing isn't terribly uncommon, especially for injury reports, but it may not be until Monday that anything becomes official.
Here's the crucial information from Jason Suchomel of Orangebloods:
I'm told all the #UT players that were dismissed/disciplined will all meet with Charlie Strong on Monday. #canIbeaflyonthewall
— Jason Suchomel (@OB_JasonS) July 25, 2014
In other words, Monday is likely to be the day when the dismissals become official, barring any appeals from players who failed the random drug test that was reportedly administered within the last several days and could have impacted the status of multiple players currently thought to be gone from the team.
And the last phrase is an important one -- despite the widespread nature of the reports of players being dismissed, the potential for appeals and another tweet from Suchomel suggest that there may be a little bit more room for one or more of the players named already to end up participating with the team in fall camp.
Take a gander:
Source: #Longhorns DB Josh Turner has been in class all day and has not yet met with coaches. Meeting will happen Monday. Turner hopeful
— Jason Suchomel (@OB_JasonS) July 25, 2014
So there is at least one player thinking that they could survive what is being called The Purge by many on the Longhorn interwebs.
Might there be more with the report from Orangebloods that Bergeron could appeal his dismissal?
What exactly have the players been told so far?
Have they been informed of their disimissals by Strong, someone else on the coaching staff, or another entity within the athletic department?
And what about the players who are still under review, a group that could number from two to five?
The two names cited by Horns Digest were initially included in an article published by Chip Brown that was used for a post on College Spun. Brown removed the names after publication, but College Spun still has them available for the public -- junior wide receiver Daje Johnson and senior offensive tackle Desmond Harrison.
Johnson was not an unexpected given his past issues in the classroom and in violating team rules, which happened multiple times and resulted in multiple suspensions across his first two years at Texas.
Harrison, however, seemed a less likely candidate than the other academic casualty still on the team from last fall -- junior offensive tackle Kennedy Estelle, who may not be completely clear given his previous issues, either.
Though the Contra Costa transfer played in only seven games last year as a reserve lineman, he's the projected starter on the left side and is an important piece for the 2014 Texas offensive line, which is extraordinarily thin right now on the outside.
So the potential of losing Harrison and even possibly Estelle if he didn't take care of business this spring in the classroom, on the practice field, and away from the team, is one that could crater the entire offensive line and make it extremely difficult for starting quarterback David Ash to find time to throw.
Not to mention the impact it would have on the running game with only one or two experienced offensive tackles on the team at that point.
But all of that is speculating well ahead of the game and the main point here remains that the crucial meetings will apparently happen on Monday and could influence all of the players currently thought to be dismissed, with the likely exception of senior linebacker Kendall Thompson, whose medical issues seem to be the driving factor behind his departure from the team.
Including wide receivers Kendall Sanders and Montrel Meander, who seem unlikely to earn reinstatement at this point, the attrition number could surpass 10 by Monday's end. Or it could be much less significant if none of the five players who reportedly are under review get dismissed and Turner ends up back with the team.
Throw in the possibility of appeals for any players who failed drug tests, like Bergeron, and the timetable gets drawn out here, while the end attrition number could decrease below the current point.
Follow all of that?
Should be an interesting next few days on the 40 Acres.
Texas Longhorns players cleared after accepting meal from agent
The suspensions that seemed imminent will not be forthcoming.
Whatever happens with the ongoing Purge currently underway with the Texas Longhorns football team, the two players who accepted a meal from an agent will not be suspended when the season gets underway, the school announced Friday afternoon.
Though the school has not identified the players, a report from Orangebloods when the allegations surfaced said that the players in question were linebackers Jordan Hicks and Steve Edmond.
The agent involved had also tweeted about having meals with senior defensive tackle Desmond Jackson and senior defensive end Cedric Reed, but those players are believed to have paid for their own meals or are otherwise not involved in the now-resolved situation. Reed confirmed as much personally at Big 12 Media Days, at least in regards to his own status.
Both players have been determined to be immediately eligible for competition by the NCAA, meaning that the NCAA looked at the three factors it considers -- value, awareness of the agent's status, and the player's involvement in obtaining the benefit -- and determined that the players had little culpability in the matter.
The typical punishment when a student-athlete receives a benefit of up to $100 from an agent is repayment and 10% withholding, which equates to a suspension of between one and two games.
It may be that the university self-reporting the violations helped make up the difference between the directives handed down to the reinstatement staff and the resolution of the matter without involving suspensions.
However the NCAA came to the ruling, it all amounts to the same thing -- all four players who were involved with the agent will be available when Texas hosts North Texas in late August.