This is a strong stand: Though their armed robbery case isn't even a week old, Tennessee's Nu'Keese Richardson and Mike Edwards have been dismissed from the team, according to ESPN's Pat Forde and confirmed by the headline at GoVols.com. (There's nothing on Tennessee's official site just yet, but, presumably, it will be coming.)
In a statement, Lane Kiffin explained the reasoning.
â‡¥"After extensive and thorough research of the situation over the last four days and considering various disciplinary options, I've decided it's in the best interest of our program to remove Nu'Keese and Mike. As I've said many times before, we hold our student-athletes to an extremely high standard on and off the field. Our student-athletes must be responsible members of society, and this type of conduct will not be tolerated."
Richardson and Edwards are both freshmen who played sparingly this season for the Vols; Richardson returned punts and kicks, but got just 14 touches on offense this season, and only four against SEC foes, and Edwards played mostly in nickel and dime packages.
Prior to his arrest, Richardson stirred up his biggest headlines this spring, when Kiffin swayed him from Florida to Rocky Top on National Signing Day. This led to some ill-informed gloating that led to an SEC reprimand for Kiffin, and all of that stoked the fires for the Tennessee-Florida rivalry. Now, Richardson and Edwards are gone, and Tennessee is left to wonder what went so wrong.â†µ
This post originally appeared on the Sporting Blog. For more, see The Sporting Blog Archives.