In what has become a familiar–albeit uncomfortable–trend, Pittsburgh Panthers head coach Paul Chryst had to address the media on Tuesday and discuss yet more off-the-field issues lingering over the program. Two separate situations were spoken about today. One was an update from last week’s police raid of a house, resulting in the suspension of three football team members. The other incident addressed is completely new and gives yet another black eye to a program that is just trying to start fresh in a new conference home.
Updating last week’s news that three players–TE Drew Carswell, DB Eric Williams, and DE Khaynin Mosley-Smith–had been indefinitely suspended following said police raid, Chryst noted that Carswell and Williams have been dismissed from the football team. Mosley-Smith remains on indefinite suspension. There was no further update given on his status.
Carswell and Williams were expected to contribute mightily to the Panthers this upcoming season, as both were bringing significant on-the-field experience from last year to the table. Carswell appeared in 10 games in 2012 and Williams appeared in all 13.
While no one knew the exact time frame in which the status of the men suspended would be updated, we knew that an announcement such as today’s would eventually come.
Now, if the announcements of these dismissals were considered the ‘black eyes’, then the next reveal could probably be considered a breath-stealing punch in the gut.
In a completely unrelated incident, it was brought to light that freshman QB Tra’Von Chapman has also been suspended for an alleged assault that occurred in his hometown of Kent, Ohio over the weekend. According to the criminal complaint that was filed, Chapman “pulled the hair of the alleged victim and grabbed her around the neck, leaving marks.”
Chapman is scheduled to appear at a pre-trial hearing on May 28.
I honestly don’t know what is going on down in the Steel City at this point. With each passing moment, it seems that Pitt’s chances for success in their first year of ACC play dwindle more significantly.
For the program’s sake–especially with the beginning of the season fast approaching–we can only hope that this is the last distracting issue the Panthers have to deal with. It would be nice if Paul Chryst and the rest of the team can concentrate on other things–like the whole football playing thing, for instance.