The star of the Long Island University Brooklyn basketball team and three other players were suspended Friday after they were arrested on assault charges following a campus brawl.
Julian Boyd, a forward named the Northeast Conference player of the year last year, high scorers Jamal Olasewere and Troy Joseph, and a fourth player, C.J. Garner, were arrested Thursday. They were arraigned on charges of assault and harassment Friday and released on their own recognizance.
Boyd, 22, who was out for a season with a heart ailment, and Olasewere, 21, were the soul of the Blackbirds - high-scorers and tough performers in a team that is a melting-pot of players from all over the country who typified New York's street smarts and swagger. Olasewere was an NEC all-conference selection last year.
The fight broke out during a welcome-back party for students at the Brooklyn campus last weekend. Initially, there was an altercation between members of the basketball and track teams. Then, a second fight broke out between basketball players and other students, including a DJ at the party. Police say the four players were arrested after five students filed complaints. Those students were not seriously injured but three were taken to a hospital.
A call to the players' attorney was not immediately returned.
LIU Brooklyn Provost Gale Stevens Haynes said in a statement that an investigation revealed the students violated the university student code of conduct and that no other students were implicated in the altercation Sept. 15.
''Behavior that jeopardizes the security of our students is unacceptable. It is essential that our students feel safe on campus,'' she said.
She said the school would have no further comment, pending completion of the legal process.
The Blackbirds won the Northeast Conference regular-season and tournament titles the past two seasons. They went 25-9 last season, 16-2 in the conference, and lost to North Carolina in the second round of the NCAA tournament.
The team is ranked No. 1 in the conference and recently promoted assistant Jack Perri to replace Jim Ferry as head men's basketball coach. Perri was on the staff at LIU for seven seasons, the last five as associate head coach.
School officials wouldn't say what would happen to the lineup. The team doesn't begin practice until October and games don't begin until November.
Olasewere is from Bartonsville, Md.; Boyd is from San Antonio; Garner, 22, is from Silver Spring, Md.; and Troy, 21, is from Brooklyn.