<
>

Two sentenced on felony burglary charges

TULSA, Okla. -- Two suspended Tulsa football players,
including the team's leading tackler last season, avoided prison
Monday when a judge sentenced them on felony burglary charges.

Kedrick Alexander, who started at defensive back, and reserve
Terrance Thomas were each given deferred sentences of two years
unsupervised probation and 120 hours of community service. They
must also apologize in writing to the victim and pay court fees and
costs of less than $450, their attorneys said.

After two years, provided the pair abide by the terms of their
probation, their records will be expunged. They could have received
prison terms.

Second-degree burglary, the crime to which Alexander and Thomas
pleaded guilty July 19 under an agreement with prosecutors, is
punishable by two to seven years in state prison.

Thomas' attorney applauded the judge's decision.

"This is a kid that has never been in trouble before," attorney Steven Hightower said. "It was just a stupid decision
they made at school while they were on scholarship. It was harebrained."

Alexander and Thomas admitted breaking into Taylor Carpenter
Wingo-Williams' room and stealing a laptop computer, a Sony
Playstation 2 game console and a credit card. The card was used to
buy gasoline.

Alexander returned the stolen items after Wingo-Williams, a
track athlete, confronted him, and he told Wingo-Williams that he
and Thomas were behind the theft, police said after the incident.

Alexander and Thomas, 19, were suspended indefinitely from the
Tulsa football program after their May 3 arrest.

Thomas, originally of Ashford, Ala., is enrolled in a junior
college in that state and hopes to return to Tulsa, Hightower said.
It was not immediately clear what Alexander's plans were.

Coach Steve Kragthorpe declined to comment Monday about whether
the players would ever be allowed to rejoin the Golden Hurricane,
who open the 2004 season Saturday at Kansas.

Alexander, 20, of Plano, Texas, led Tulsa in tackles as a
sophomore last year with 121. He also intercepted three passes. He was named to the All-Western Athletic Conference second team.

He helped lead Tulsa to the biggest turnaround in college
football, an 8-5 record and a trip to the Humanitarian Bowl, the
Golden Hurricane's first bowl since 1991.

Thomas, who was a freshman, redshirted last season and did not play.