MTS suspends 3 football players
Middle Tennessee State suspended three football players Saturday after they were charged with a series of crimes.
Coach Rick Stockstill referenced ''charges'' in a statement released by the university, and The Daily News Journal of Murfreesboro said defensive tackle J.D. Jones was charged with two counts of domestic aggravated assault, and cornerback Rodney O'Neal and defensive tackle Marcus Robinson were each charged with two counts of aiding and abetting.
The newspaper said the three sophomores turned themselves in to campus police Saturday and were booked into the Rutherford County Detention Center.
The News Journal said Jones was being held on $60,000 bond, O'Neal on $40,000 bond and Robinson on $5,000 bond. They have an Aug. 29 court date, the day the Blue Raiders open the season against Western Carolina.
''I was disappointed to learn of charges brought against three current football players,'' Stockstill said in the statement. ''This is not the reflection of our football program we want at Middle Tennessee and we will react accordingly after gathering all pertinent information. The three players are suspended immediately from the football team. We always try to represent our University to the highest standards and matters like this are taken very seriously.''
Athletic director Chris Massaro also released a statement.
''Preliminary information we have gathered warrants a suspension of the three student athletes in question,'' Massaro said. ''We take all of these matters very seriously and we are still gathering information.''