Arizona State Football Makes Correct Decision Releasing Davon Durant
It had to have been a very tough decision, especially for a team so close to cracking elite status in the land of college football, but on Wednesday it was announced that Davon Durant, a junior-college five-star transfer, was no longer a member of the Arizona State Sun Devils‘ football program. The school, team and coach Todd Graham severed all ties with the highly-sought linebacker.
The release stems from a domestic violence and aggravated assault arrest that occurred on March 7, when Durant was accused of attacking his girlfriend while stopped in a vehicle. The charges were later dropped and Durant plead guilty to a misdemeanor count of disorderly conduct in May.
Durant was the crown jewel of Graham’s recruiting class. A team focused on defense, Durant was expected to use his skills and lead the Sun Devils’ aggressive attacking approach. Instead, Durant was absent from all Sun Devil football activities, and never took the field as a member of the team.
“He’s done. We parted ways. He put himself in that position. It’s a bad deal, but you’ve got to have accountability,” Graham told SI.com. “We don’t just talk about character and discipline. We live it. No matter what the legal system does, our standards are high and our guys know that. They know they’re going to be held accountable.”
With the sport having such a recent negative spotlight highlighted by domestic abuse, Arizona State had no choice but to release Durant after his troubling situation and they made the correct call in doing so. Even recently, domestic abuse was brought to the forefront of football when a video was leaked of (now released) Florida State Seminoles quarterback De’Andre Johnson punching a woman in a club.
It’s difficult to see a player of Durant’s caliber never take the field in maroon and gold, but Graham stuck to his guns and continues to lead a no-nonsense squad. Domestic violence has no place on the football field or anywhere around it for that matter. Sure the charges were dropped, but the simple fact that the incident occurred is bad enough. The team especially doesn’t need distractions as its main focus is on a PAC-12 Championship and a place in the College Football Playoff with aspirations of a championship — a place it hasn’t been since the coveted 1996 season.
By now, people are well aware of the crime and other wrongdoings that are ignored by athletes, and it’s definitely time for that trend to come to an end.