CFB: Oregon coach boots receiver after Facebook posting
EUGENE, Ore. — Oregon coach Chip Kelly announced today he has dismissed wide receiver Jamere Holland from the team, hinting it was because of an expletive-filled statement Holland posted on Facebook the day before.
Kelly said Holland was dismissed for violating team rules, but didn't elaborate.
However, asked by The Oregonian if the violation was related to Holland's Facebook posting, the coach said: "I won't get into the specifics, but you're smart enough to figure it out."
Holland posted the Facebook statement after linebacker Kristian Kiko Alonso was arrested early Saturday on suspicion of driving under the influence of intoxicants. Alonso is the fourth Oregon player to be arrested in the past month.
In his post, Holland mistakenly concluded that Alonso had been kicked off the team and blasted the move as unfair and damaging to the Ducks.
Holland wrote in a later post: "I wish I could block whites as friends and only have blacks LOL, cause apparently I'm misunderstood."
School spokesman Dave Williford said Alonso remains on the team.
"His status hasn't changed, contrary to Internet reports, rumors and Jamere Holland," Williford said.
Athletic director Mike Bellotti, who was football coach when Holland transferred to Oregon from Southern California after the 2006 season, told The Oregonian he was frustrated with Holland.
"We've given this guy so many chances," Bellotti said Sunday while attending Oregon's stunts and gymnastics meet. "We've had many sit-down, very serious talks."
In two seasons with Oregon, Holland had 17 catches for 252 yards and two touchdowns.
Alonso was the Ducks' primary backup at middle linebacker and one of the top special teams performers in the 2009 season. He has been viewed as a probable starter for the 2011 and 2012 seasons.
Alonso could not immediately be reached for comment.
He was stopped less than a day after Kelly held a news conference to talk about other off-field problems by his players.
Star running back LaMichael James, 20, was arrested last week after his girlfriend told police he choked her and threw her to the ground during an argument. James pleaded not guilty Wednesday to charges of fourth-degree assault, physical harassment and strangulation.
Eugene police said last week that place-kicker Rob Beard had been cited with investigation of misdemeanor assault in a Jan. 24 street fight that left him seriously injured. Police also cited defensive end Matt Simms for investigation of misdemeanor assault in that brawl. Simms was dismissed from the team, while another kicker allegedly involved in the incident, Mike Bowlin, left the team last week. Simms and Beard have pleaded not guilty.
At his Friday news conference, Kelly said he stresses discipline and responsibility to his players.
"We will constantly work to make sure that these players understand that playing here is a privilege, and with that privilege comes responsibility, and if you can't follow the rules, I'll have to make some tough decisions," he said.
Information from: The Oregonian, http://www.oregonlive.com