Oregon suspends Masoli for season
By ANNE M. PETERSON
Oregon quarterback Jeremiah Masoli was suspended yesterday for the upcoming season by coach Chip Kelly after pleading guilty to second-degree burglary in the theft of a pair of laptops and a guitar from a campus fraternity.
Masoli, a Saint Louis alum from Hawai'i who had been mentioned as a potential Heisman candidate, will remain on scholarship with the Ducks.
"He does have a redshirt season available to him if he chooses to do that," Kelly said.
Kelly announced the suspension just hours after Masoli appeared in Lane County Circuit Court to answer to the burglary charge.
Kelly, who has come under fire for some of his disciplinary decisions, also meted out punishment for running back LaMichael James and placekicker Rob Beard.
James was suspended for the season opener after he pleaded guilty early yesterday to a misdemeanor harassment charge stemming from an altercation with his former girlfriend.
Beard was also suspended for the opener Sept. 4 at home against New Mexico after pleading guilty last week to a misdemeanor harassment charge for his role in a street fight that left him seriously injured.
"I am extremely disappointed anytime any of our players fall short of our expectations that have been clearly outlined for them in advance on numerous occasions," Kelly said. "Their accountability for their actions is paramount and any tainting of the reputation of the University of Oregon and this football program will not be tolerated."
Masoli pleaded guilty as part of a deal that reduced his charge from a felony to a misdemeanor. Former Ducks receiver Garrett Embry pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of second-degree burglary as well.
Both were sentenced to 12 months of probation and 140 hours of community service. Together they must also pay $5,000 restitution.