Over at SB Nation’s Arkansas Expats, the suspensions were predictable, but still slightly confusing:
Both Courtney Fortson and Stefan Welsh have been suspended indefinitely. Welsh we knew about, but the news on Fortson is at least somewhat surprising. It was known that he would face some type of suspension after his infamous tweet, but Pelphrey’s comments make it sound like additional factors are at work as well.
“[Fortson] has to come to me,” Pelphrey said today, according to Robbie Neiswanger. “He has a couple of personal issues he wants to try to handle, and we’re going to try to do that with him … [It] says ‘indefinite suspension.’ This is not something we’re going to resolve over a weekend or whatever.”
As for the rest of the suspensions, freshman forward Glenn Bryant will be out for two games, Marcus Britt for 6 games, and former Pink Floyd drummer walk-on guard Nick Mason for the rest of the semester. All three were named in the police report on what’s become known as the “frat house incident.” Britt also was arrested on DUI charges over the summer.
All suspensions begin with Friday’s season-opener against Alcorn State. Toss in the fact that forward Michael Sanchez is probably out for a good while with plantar fasciitis, and the Hogs will open the regular season seriously depleted.
The “infamous tweet” they reference occurred when Courtney Fortson made light of the alleged rape, saying on Twitter:
I’m gettin it at workouts like a dude who doesnt understand the word no from a drunk girl lol
And... Wow. As offensive tweets go, that was a particularly inspired effort. (And Welsh, it should be noted, was suspended for a reason unrelated to the alleged rape.)
Still, while nothing official has been put forth by the university linking the alleged rape to the suspensions of the other 3 players—Britt, Bryant, and Mason—it would appear that the incident is at the heart of all this. And the suspension suggests that Arkansas officials, while not necessarily convinced of their guilt, are certainly concerned as to whether these student-athletes may wind up getting charged in this affair. Stay tuned.