Thursday, December 14, 2017
Colleges

Florida Gators tight end to transfer in wake of arrest

HOOVER, Ala. — Five months after he was suspended following his arrest on a domestic battery charge, Florida tight end A.C. Leonard is transferring, coach Will Muschamp said Wednesday.

"He had a set of criteria he needed to work his way back on our football team," Muschamp said. "He and I both sat down and decided it would be better off for him to transfer. I don't know where he's wanting to go. I'm going to talk to him further about it. It was a mutual decision. Sometimes it doesn't work, and it wasn't working in this situation, so he needs to move on."

Leonard is the 13th player to transfer since Muschamp's arrival.

In other UF news, CB Jeremy Brown is scheduled to have surgery to repair a broken wrist but is expected to return by Sept. 1. LB Ronald Powell has been cleared to resume weight training after suffering a torn ACL in the spring game.

A NEW BEGINNING: John L. Smith said although he's currently under a 10-month contract, he would like to become the permanent coach at Arkansas. Smith was hired to replace Bobby Petrino, who was fired after it was discovered he had been having an affair with a woman he hired to work in the athletic department. For now, Smith is focused solely on this team and this season.

"Our goal is to be a national championship football team, and that's what we want to get done," Smith said.

Petrino called several of his former players last week, including QB Tyler Wilson and RB Knile Davis, to offer his support and an apology.

"I could hear the humbleness and the hurt in his voice," Davis said.

The players said the scandal brought them closer and provided a valuable lesson: "Keep your personal life in order, keep your emotions right and keep your soul right," DE Tenarius Wright said.

FORGET, MOVE ON: It has been seven months since LSU lost to Alabama in the BCS title game, and though the pain remains, the players and coach Les Miles said they've moved on.

"We were 13-0 leading up to that game, we won the (SEC) West, which was a tremendous accomplishment," WR Odell Beckham Jr. said. "You can't say that's a failure. … They were the better team that day. We can't dwell on it."

STAR POWER: Miles added to his quirky persona with his EA Sports commercial featuring the mascot, Mike the Tiger, who betrays Miles by using former Baylor QB Robert Griffin III on his LSU video game team. As for that line in the commercial — "You were like a son to me. A Tiger son." — Miles said he can't count the number of times people have approached him to recite it. Interestingly, he may not have been doing that much acting.

"My 13-year-old son, Ben, says to me: 'Dad, I saw the commercial. You've talked to me like that. You really have.' "

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