Wednesday, January 6, 2010
Another player speaks out about Leavitt
By Brian Bennett
The South Florida investigation into allegations of player abuse by coach Jim Leavitt is now stretching into its fourth week. Meanwhile, another player has come forward to back the original accusation by walk-on Joel Miller.
Receiver Colby Erskin tells Fanhouse's Brett McMurphy -- who broke the original story -- that Miller had told him Leavitt grabbed and slapped Miller at halftime of the Louisville game. However, Erskin was not in the locker room at the time.
Erskin's father said he decided to speak out "when he learned Leavitt cleaned out his son's locker Monday and threw the contents, including Colby's personal items and International Bowl jersey, into a trash bin. Equipment manager Jeremy Lees told Colby Erskin that Leavitt had personally removed everything. Colby said he found his belongings in a trash bin in USF's football equipment room."
Joel Miller and his father have publicly rescinded the original accusations. But Miller's high school coach told McMurphy the original report was accurate.
This, clearly, needs a resolution quickly. If South Florida decides to make a change, it's getting late in the game to find suitable head coaching candidates. If not, then this story can only hurt recruiting. The investigation needs to be complete and accurate, obviously, but a month should be enough time to wrap this up one way or another.