3 arrested Ark. players not on team
FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- Arkansas coach John L. Smith said three players who were suspended indefinitely after being arrested earlier this month for burglary are currently not part of the team or enrolled in summer school.
Receivers Marquel Wade and Maudrecus Humphrey and tight end Andrew Peterson were arrested May 12 and have been charged with felony residential burglary. According to arrest reports, the three stole textbooks, DVDs, laptops and more than $4,800 in cash from a university dormitory.
All have hearings set for June 15.
"It's a felony and it's a serious, serious thing," Smith said. "They're not a part of this football team until this thing gets cleared up or they never (will) be a part.
"If they can't correct it, then you have to correct it for them; that's the way it is going to be. It's in the legal channels and we're just going to have to wait and see if they can correct the issue."
Three other Arkansas players also have been arrested since March on unrelated incidents. Smith said he has spoken to the team about better off-field conduct.
"We tried to explain to them what's going to be accepted and what's not going to be accepted, and what are going to be the consequences," Smith said. "We're going to demand that they do the right things.
"If (the message) hasn't got across, it certainly will before it's all said and done."
Smith said linebacker Tyler Gilbert, arrested April 17 on charges of felony aggravated assault, has "at least a locker to work out of," but his legal issues have yet to be resolved.
Kane Whitehurst, who was arrested April 1 on marijuana possession charges, was given a scholarship release earlier this month, while Jason Peacock, arrested March 16 on felony theft of property charges, was reinstated to the football team prior to Bobby Petrino's firing as head coach in April.
Aside from the off-field incidents, Smith, given a 10-month contract to replace Petrino, said things are going well for the Razorbacks and he is excited about the program's future, which he hopes to be part of past the highly anticipated 2012 season.
An estimated $44.98 million worth of construction is underway on a football operations center, new practice fields and a new stadium video screen.
Defensive ends coach Steve Caldwell said recruiting has not been hurt because of Smith's uncertain status beyond 2012.
"John L. Smith is the head coach, and we're planning on him being here a long time," he said.
In an attempt to interact with fans, Smith is speaking at Razorback club events throughout the state this spring and even opened a Twitter account last week.
"I think taking ourselves as a university and a program out to the people more is a challenge that we all have to embrace and do as a staff," Smith said.
Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press
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