Chris Petersen is still settling in as the new head coach of the Washington Huskies but he has already been forced to deal with an unfortunate situation. Just one day after a strong National Signing Day, UW announced that they have indefinitely suspended quarterback Cyler Miles and wide receiver Damore’ea Stringfellow for “violating team rules” stemming from an altercation following the Super Bowl. Depending on how serious this situation is, Washington could be forced into some uncomfortable decisions on these two returning contributors.
According to Seattle television station KIRO 7, Stringfellow and another unidentified player were involved in a fight after the Seattle Seahawks won the Super Bowl. According to a police report, two players from the Washington team assaulted a man with “multiple punches” to his “left eye, chin and cheek.” While the KIRO 7 report did not specifically name Miles as the other assailant, UW’s decision to suspend him this suddenly leads one to assume that he was involved.
Depending on the length of their indefinite suspension, Washington could feel the effects of this incident in the 2014 season. Both Miles and Stringfellow figured to be prominent members of the offense next fall with Miles widely recognized as the front-runner to be the next starting quarterback after appearing in eight games and starting two in place of an injured Keith Price in 2013. Stringfellow recorded stats in seven games last season, highlighted by an 8-catch, 147-yard performance against the UCLA Bruins.
With a new coaching staff taking over, Miles and Stringfellow have zero good will built up that might help them get off easy in this situation. Petersen could take this opportunity to send a message to the team about what kind of program he plans to run at Washington by taking a hard stance on these two players. If he does, will UW suffer for it in 2014?