Head Coach James Franklin of Vanderbilt University had four players of his football squad suspended amid sex crime investigations. As a result of metro police investigations the athletes were dismissed from the university with no pending charges.
In an email sent to The Tennessean on Saturday by David Williams, Vanderbilt Athletics Director, he wrote, “No statement at this time.” The police and university officials have acknowledged that the dismissal of the student athletes was related to the investigations.
Officials of the metro crime investigation declined to discuss the details of the investigations and no names have been released related to the incident. No arrests have been made since the suspending of the players. It is unclear what the news of the investigation will have on Vanderbilt’s football program.
This is not the first time incidents of law violations have been investigated by police under Franklin’s coaching regime. In May, defensive back Jacquese Kirk was arrested for stabbing ex-Vanderbilt offensive lineman Justin Cabbagestalk. In November of 2011, reserve safety Andre Simmons was suspended indefinitely and later dismissed for involvement of an armed robbery of a fellow student. Vanderbilt University Head Coach James Franklin’s football players are in trouble on a constant basis.
In March, defensive tackle Jared Morse was kicked off the football team and expelled from the university. He later was readmitted to the school and the football team after reconciling with Coach Franklin. In January 2012, starting center Logan Stewart was kicked off Vanderbilt’s football team.
Vanderbilt’s football program is in its off season and many of the coaches are on vacation. School officials have commented that it is normal to have athletes on campus completing summer classes and doing team workout activities.
Metro police began investigating sex crimes complaints on Wednesday in campus dormitories. Detectives conducted interviews to confirm complaint allegations and relayed the findings to campus officials. Soon after the participants of the investigations were dismissed from the university based on the findings.
“The well-being of our students is of paramount concern to us, and we will not tolerate any actions that threaten student safety and security,” said Beth Fortune, Vanderbilt’s vice chancellor for public affairs.
The University refused to comment further on the case and have not released the records of the students involved. With Vanderbilt University Head Coach James Franklin’s football players in trouble he has not returned calls for a statement regarding the matter.
By Thomas Barr