After a second USF player was arrested for a serious felony in the last 45 days, a Hillsborough County Court Judge took it upon herself to put new head coach Charlie Strong and the football program on blast.
Defensive end LaDarrius Jackson was arrested late Monday on a sexual assault charge and when he appeared in court this afternoon, U.S. District Judge Margaret Taylor, who’s a USF alum, decided to express her displeasure and sound off:
Judge asks if Charlie Strong has control of the USF football team following recent player arrests (????: r/CFB) pic.twitter.com/SatBlFvgQB
— Sports Illustrated (@SInow) May 3, 2017
Taylor was also making reference to the March arrest of defensive back Hassan Childs who was dismissed two days later after felony charges were brought in his road rage incident.
Taylor directed her ire at Strong with, “It’s fairly clear that you do not have control of them off the field. And I guess only time will tell whether you have control over them on the field.”
USF released a statement from Strong later Wednesday afternoon that generically read:
“In the short time I have been here our program has been built on character, discipline and family. We have wonderful young men in the USF football program who choose to do the right thing every day. We are dedicated to recruiting young men of high character, and to consistently developing them with structure and frequent education regarding appropriate conduct and behavior, on and off the playing field. While I am shocked and saddened at the recent arrest of a member of our team, I am disappointed that the actions of two players over the last two months have harmed the reputation of our program, of our wonderful university and of my character. We have high expectations of our coaches, staff and student-athletes and we hold accountable those who act contrary to our values.”
It should be further noted that Strong, who was just hired in December, did not recruit either Jackson or Childs and both players are dismissed from the team pending their cases.
Still it’s not a good luck to have these incidents and now nationwide attention from a judge taking USF to task.