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Friday, January 6, 2012
Hoke has decision to make on Stonum

By Adam Rittenberg

Darryl Stonum is headed back to jail, as a judge on Friday sentenced the Michigan wide receiver to 10 days for violating his probation.

Stonum, who received two years' probation following a drunken-driving arrest in May, was stopped Thursday by police for driving on a revoked license while en route to a probation meeting. He then lied to his probation officer about how he arrived for the meeting.

This is the same player who served three days in jail in summer 2010 for probation violations stemming from a drunken-driving arrest he had as a Wolverines freshman in 2008. Michigan coach Brady Hoke indefinitely suspended Stonum after his May arrest, and the receiver redshirted the 2011 season. After Michigan's win Tuesday night at the Allstate Sugar Bowl, Stonum told the Detroit Free Press that his "life is way different" and that his offseason would be "extremely focused."

Hoke told reporters Thursday that Stonum's status hadn't changed, adding that he's still gathering information. He also said he's not concerned about Stonum's decision-making.

Judge Charles Pope spelled it out pretty clearly for Stonum on Friday, admonishing Stonum for his behavior pattern and particularly for lying to his probation officer.
"To have somebody with four encounters with the criminal justice system involving the use and abuse of alcohol at the age of 21 is extremely unusual," Pope told Stonum. "You're less than one percent of the population as a result of that."

From colleague Michael Rothstein's story:
When sentenced, Stonum attempted to explain to the judge that he had just begun classes for the semester. He mumbled through most of his court appearance and told the court "I was stuck," which was why he drove himself to court.
To which Pope responded: "You were stuck because your actions have led to now."

Stonum has left Hoke with a big decision to make. And it might be a clear-cut decision.

Players have been dismissed from teams for a lot less. There have been examples at Big Ten schools throughout the season. Players rarely get third chances with the same program.

Few would be surprised if Hoke booted Stonum from the team. Although Stonum by all accounts had conducted himself well between his May arrest and Thursday's citation, there are consequences for poor decisions and for lying.

Let's see what Hoke decides ...