- Chris Low, ESPN Senior Staff Writer
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A Knoxville man is saying he was beaten by a group of Tennessee players early last Friday morning in a bar-clearing brawl that has already led to one dismissal and two suspensions of Vols players.
Gary Russell, 20, said the only two players he could positively identify were defensive tackle Montori Hughes and receiver Denarius Moore. Russell said six or seven players jumped on him and were kicking and beating him while he lay on the floor after he bumped into Hughes. Russell said Hughes started the fight by pushing him and then punching him in his chest following the inadvertent bump. At that point, Russell said he swung back to defend himself, triggering the brawl that eventually spilled outside and left an off-duty police officer unconscious.
The 6-foot-4, 312-pound Hughes claims he was attacked by Russell from behind, and the Tennessee players in separate meetings have told coach Derek Dooley that's what happened. The police are still investigating and say more charges could be coming. Hughes has yet to be questioned by police or charged with anything, although he hired a lawyer last weekend.
Here's the latest on the situation.