Sullinger's court date precedes start of practice

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Ohio State basketball player J.J.
Sullinger has been charged with drunken driving and is scheduled to
appear in court two days before the Buckeyes start practice.

A message seeking comment of Sullinger's status with the team
was left Tuesday for coach Thad Matta, who was out of state on a
recruiting trip. Sports information director Steve Snapp said it's
the university's policy not to comment on legal matters.

Sullinger, 22, was stopped by Columbus police early Sept. 4
after he was observed driving erratically, according to a police
report. His blood-alcohol level was measured at 0.099, above Ohio's
legal limit of 0.08.

His father, Satch Sullinger, said Monday that his son had two
beers with friends who were not teammates.

"It was not in-season, he is not underage. He just made a real
bad mistake the first time he had a couple beers," Satch Sullinger
said. "It'll probably be the last time."

Sullinger, a 6-foot-5 junior guard, averaged 10.1 points in 30
games last season. He transferred to Ohio State in 2002 after one
season at Arkansas.

His arraignment is scheduled for Oct. 14 in Franklin County
Municipal Court.