Wednesday, October 27, 2010
OSU, Nebraska face player suspensions
By David Ubben
Oklahoma State and Nebraska will both be without suspended players on Saturday.
Oklahoma State announced a one-game suspension for receiver Justin Blackmon, currently the nation's leader in receiving yards and touchdowns. Blackmon attended Monday night's Dallas Cowboys game, and was pulled over by police doing 92 mph in a 60 mph zone just north of Dallas in Carrollton, Texas at 3:45 a.m. on Tuesday morning.
Police charged Blackmon, 20, with a misdemeanor DUI. In Texas, persons can be charged with a DUI for any amount of alcohol if they are under 21 and driving. An officer said Blackmon fell into that category.
"I made a mistake and I take full responsibility for it. I am embarrassed to be in this position. I am truly sorry. To my family, to my friends, and to Oklahoma State as a whole, I look forward to redeeming myself and proving to everybody that this isn't who I am. I am humbled by this experience and I will grow from it," Blackmon said in a statement, before briefly taking questions from reporters.
Blackmon declined to discuss where he got the tickets to Monday's game.
""I have apologized to my teammates for being a distraction and that I brought this on the team. I apologize to this program and to the school. I brought a lot of bad press to Oklahoma State and I am really sorry for that," Blackmon said.
Cowboys coach Mike Gundy said Blackmon spent Wednesday's practice on a stairmaster.
"I compiled all the information just like I do with any situation that happens outside of our football program," Gundy said. "I call it like it is and I make the decision. No one else makes that decision but me. I decide what the punishment will be depending on the situation and I think what took place once I gather all the information. There are no two that are alike. Sometimes the procedure outside of here based on the court system is involved, and sometimes it is not. We are always going to follow the law and in our opinion what he did deserves a suspension from this game."
No. 20 Oklahoma State plays at Kansas State on Saturday. Blackmon will not travel with the team.
Elsewhere, the Big 12 announced on Wednesday afternoon that Nebraska sophomore reserve linebacker Eric Martin would be suspended for an illegal hit in the Huskers' 51-41 win over Oklahoma State last week.
Nebraska kick returner Niles Paul returned a kick 100 yards for a score with 6:27 to play in the first quarter of the Cornhuskers' 51-41 win over Oklahoma State last week, but on the play, Martin made helmet-to-helmet contact on a block with Cowboys freshman defensive end Andrew Hudson.
Hudson was attended to for several minutes before being carted off the field.
"Mr. Martin committed a flagrant act of targeting an opponent with the crown of his helmet in violation of NCAA football rules," commissioner Dan Beebe said in a statement. "This dangerous hit is one that we in the football community are trying to remove from the game."
No penalty was assessed on the play, but Big 12 officials reviewed the game tape and issued a suspension in accordance with NCAA Football Rule 9-6-3, which states, "if subsequent review of a game by a conference reveals plays involving flagrant personal fouls that game officials did not call, the conference may impose sanctions prior to the next scheduled game."
No. 14 Nebraska hosts No. 6 Missouri on Saturday.