Dvoracek will not play vs. Oregon

Updated: September 17, 2004, 11:59 PM ET
Associated Press

NORMAN, Okla. -- Oklahoma coach Bob Stoops dismissed starting defensive tackle Dusty Dvoracek from the team Friday while police investigated an incident that ended with one of Dvoracek's high school teammates in the hospital.

Earlier in the day, the Sooners had suspended Dvoracek indefinitely, but Stoops announced in a statement late Friday night that Dvoracek, an All-Big 12 selection and third team All-American last season, had been dismissed.

"I have learned more over the course of the day and now believe there is a sufficient pattern of behavior to merit Dusty's removal from the team," Stoops said. "That is the step we are taking. At the same time, we will continue to offer to Dusty all of the services that are available through our department and the university."

Oklahoma plays Oregon on Saturday.

Norman police said Friday they had contacted the family of Matt Wilde, one of Dvoracek's teammates at Lake Dallas (Texas) High School. Wilde suffered a head injury either late Saturday or early Sunday. His condition was upgraded from fair to good, Paula Price, a spokeswoman for Norman Regional Hospital said Friday.

Circumstances of how Wilde was injured are under investigation.

Police said Wilde's family did not want to pursue charges at this time. No arrests have been made and no charges have been filed.

Cleveland County District Attorney Tim Kuykendall has said he isn't sure whether any criminal behavior was involved, but he wants the incident investigated.

Stoops conducted his own investigation into the circumstances surrounding Dvoracek, who was second on the team with seven sacks last season.

Kenny Mossman, Oklahoma's associate athletic director for media relations, said he could not elaborate on what Stoops meant by referring to Dvoracek's "pattern of behavior."

Dvoracek, 23, was arrested in July 2002 for public intoxication, but Norman's city attorney ruled that there was not enough evidence to pursue criminal charges against Dvoracek.

Mossman said Dvoracek would retain his scholarship.

Junior college transfer Remi Ayodele and redshirt freshman Steven Coleman are listed as Dvoracek's backups on Oklahoma's most recent depth chart. Ayodele had the first 1.5 sacks of his Oklahoma career in last week's game against Houston. Coleman has not played in the Sooners' first two games.

Dvoracek had three tackles, including one for a loss, and one fumble recovery this season.


Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press