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USF football lands a trio of transfers

Running back Hugh Smith confirmed he has transferred to USF, and he confirmed that Georgia's Kawika Mitchell will be joining the team.

"Kawika told me he did transfer to USF," Smith said.

Smith is listed on the USF roster on the school's official Web site. The 5-foot-10, 175-pound running back transferred from Miami of Ohio, where he sat out last year under Proposition 48.

Mitchell, however, is not listed on the roster, which was updated July 22. But USF actively has recruited him and he is expected to show up Monday when practice begins. According to Georgia SID Claude Felten, "It is my understanding that Kawika has transferred to South Florida."

Smith was a high school star at Merritt Island, where he rushed for 1,924 yards on 210 carries his senior year and had 21 touchdowns. He was a Class 4A all-state first-teamer.

Smith said he is eager to join a crowded USF backfield.

"I got my grades up, and I transferred back because I wanted to come back where my parents could see me play," Smith said. "The coaches really want to give me a chance."

Mitchell, who is 6-2, 240 pounds, was a Class 6A all-state linebacker at Lake Howell in 1998. As a senior he had 110 tackles and three sackes, and also scored five touchdowns as a running back.

Another new player for the Bulls this season will be George Higgins, a former Tarpon Springs player who did not play his senior year in 1994 and since has attended junior college and has been in the military. He is listed on the roster as a 6-2, 205-pound freshman.

MINNESOTA: The school has blocked efforts by a state agency, a newspaper and two alleged victims of sexual misconduct to gain access to edited portions of a report on the conduct of athletes and administrators.

About half of the 233-page report on the handling of sexual assault and misconduct allegations was whited out before it was released in early July.

The report into how university officials handled assault cases is one of two investigations into men's sports. The other inquiry, into alleged academic fraud in the basketball program, isn't expected to be completed until October.

About 40 claims of sexual misconduct or sexual assault since 1993 were reviewed by investigators. The allegations were publicized when the Star Tribune reported in May that since 1993, university athletics officials _ sometimes with the cooperation of campus police _ intervened in sexual misconduct and assault investigations of star athletes.

NOTRE DAME: Kimberly Dunbar, the woman who embezzled more than $1.2-million from her employer and spent some of the money on football players, will be released from prison in October, a year earlier than expected.


USF TRANSFER: Coach Seth Greenberg said sophomore F Raheim Brown will transfer from the school. Greenberg said Brown has decided to "pursue other opportunities."

AXTELL LAWSUIT: Former Texas coach Tom Penders orchestrated the improper release of a former player's grades while an assistant coach took the blame, according to sworn statements filed in state district court.

The almost 1,000 pages of testimony from nine people were filed Tuesday as part of a lawsuit by the player, Luke Axtell, against Capstar Texas Limited Partnership, the parent company of KVET-AM.

Filed in January, the lawsuit asserts the station violated Axtell's right to privacy when it broadcast his academic status report on March 18, 1998. Axtell, who transferred to Kansas, is seeking damages of more than $50,000.

The testimony paints a picture of Penders as an erratic and volatile coach who made angry late-night telephone calls to players and staff members and who allowed longtime assistant coach Eddie Oran to accept blame for his actions.

Penders, who coaches at George Washington, denied he had any role in releasing Axtell's grade report. Oran now sells cars.

EATON RELEASED FROM JAIL: The man charged in a collision that killed Purdue's Tiffany Young was released from jail and will appear in court Aug. 18.

Arnold Eaton, a Navy Petty Officer 2nd Class, posted the required 10 percent of the required $10,000 to make bail. Eaton, 33, was home on leave from the Great Lakes Naval Training Station in Great Lakes, Ill., when he was involved in the fiery crash that killed Young, a member of Purdue's national championship women's team.

SOUTH CAROLINA: The starting center for Tennessee's women's team will transfer. Teresa Geter, a South Carolina native, said in a prepared statement she planned to transfer to a school in or near South Carolina. Wednesday her father, Robert Geter, told the Associated Press she would transfer to USC.

_ Staff writer John C. Cotey contributed to this report.