USC suspends Sanchez after sexual assault arrest

Updated: April 27, 2006, 3:54 PM ET
Associated Press

LOS ANGELES -- Southern California backup quarterback Mark Sanchez was released from jail early Thursday following his arrest for investigation of sexually assaulting a female student, authorities said.

Sanchez, 19, was released shortly after midnight after posting $200,000 bail, said Los Angeles County sheriff's Deputy Ban Nguyen.

He was arrested around 4 p.m. Wednesday at an apartment complex near campus, Los Angeles police Officer Jason Lee said. No other details were immediately available.

USC officials said they will temporarily suspend Sanchez while police conduct their investigation.

"The university takes charges of sexual assault seriously," Michael Jackson, USC vice president of student affairs, said in a statement. "Depending on the facts as established by the LAPD, we will determine the appropriate action. In the interim, the student will be placed on interim suspension while the case is pending."

USC coach Pete Carroll said he was aware of Sanchez's arrest and that the Trojan football program would cooperate with police and "follow along with whatever action the university takes."

Sanchez is listed on the Trojans' depth chart as the backup to John David Booty, but was expected to battle for the starting job this fall. Booty practiced only once this spring before he injured his back and had to undergo surgery.

Sanchez, a redshirt freshman, played the recent spring scrimmage and has been practicing with the first unit.

His arrest was one of several off-field problems for USC within the last year. However, no charges were brought in the other cases.


Copyright 2006 by The Associated Press