HATTIESBURG, Miss. -- Southern Mississippi coach Jeff Bower suspended two players, including star kick returner John Eubanks, dismissed two others and announced Thursday the team's leading rusher and another player have quit the squad.
Eubanks, who also starts at cornerback, and backup tight end Pedi Causey were suspended for the Sept. 4 season opener against Tulane for violating unspecified team policies.
Eubanks returned a kickoff 97 yards for a touchdown against Houston last season, and he shared the team lead with three interceptions.
Defensive back Darrell Bennett and linebacker Kenneth Boley were also dismissed for violating team policies.
Leaving the team were running back Anthony Harris and linebacker Naton Stewart. No explanation was given by Bower.
Harris moved to fullback this season after leading the Golden Eagles in rushing the past two seasons at tailback. He ran for 714 yards and five touchdowns on 175 carries last season.
Boley, the only junior among the six players, is the older brother of former Southern Miss linebacker Michael Boley, the 2004 Conference USA defensive player of the year and a fifth-round draft pick of the Atlanta Falcons.
Bennett was expected to start at free safety after starting at rover last season. Stewart, a backup last season, was expected to start at this year.