Pitt Football Disciplinary Problems: Jeff Knox Trial Postponed

The disciplinary issues mount for Pitt's football team.

  • Live
8 Total Updates since September 14, 2010
  • Updates 8
  • All Updates 8

Jeff Knox Trial Postponed

Former Pitt safety Jeff Knox has had his preliminary hearing postponed at the request of his lawyer. Knox was dismissed from the team after an alleged assault against a woman at Chatham University.

Knox is scheduled to be back in court on November 18th.


Three More Suspensions For Pitt

Pitt’s off-field troubles continue to mount up as Dave Wannstedt suspended three more players this week - RB T.J. Peeler, DL Bernardo Nunez, and LB Kevin Adams. The issues appear to be somewhat minor ones at least compared to some of Pitt’s other issues relating to suspensions this season:

As I stated before the game three players did not make the trip and are officially suspended indefinitely from the team for various indiscretions and basic general immaturity. The three players are defensive linemen Bernardo Nunez, linebacker Kevin Adams and tailback T.J. Peeler. Pitt coach Dave Wannstedt said after the game that all three will not be participating with the team until they take care of some things academically and prove they deserve the chance to play college football again.

Obviously, there’s nothing ‘minor’ about not doing well academically, but these issues don’t appear as serious as some of the other things that have plagued Pitt players this year including assault and DUI charges. It seems like the door is open for all three to return to the program.


Wannstedt Kicks Freshman Jeff Knox Off Team

In Pitt’s latest off-field problem, the Panthers have kicked freshman defensive back Jeff Knox off the team following an unknown off-field incident last night. This is the latest in a long string of behavioral problems the Pitt football team has encountered this year.


Student Tells His Side Of The Story In Coleman Assault

Christopher Harding, a Pitt senior injured in the alleged Keith Coleman assault, spoke out on the incident involving he, Coleman, and a third man, Brendan Connor:

Harding said he was out walking by himself very early Saturday in Oakland when he witnessed the incident begin.

“In front of him was a guy and a girl. He, like, walked right in between them and hit them both; and the girl stumbled,” Harding told KDKA’s David Highfield from a hospital room at UPMC Presbyterian Hospital.

The incident happened along the sidewalk in Oakland around 2 a.m.

“Of course the guy said something like, ‘What are you doing?’ And he ended up punching the kid,” Harding said.

He claims Coleman had the man in a neck hold, so Harding said he decided to try to break it up.

“Then, he, like, started at me and I think he swung at me, then he hit me in the left shoulder and broke the collarbone,” said Harding. “He hit me in the left shoulder, then he had me in a headlock.”

Harding ended up on the ground and later lost consciousness.

There were accusations of a racial slur being used, but Harding says that isn’t true:

According to police papers, Coleman said he was walking down the street when two men called him a racial slur, but Harding says he never used a slur and is offended by that claim.

“I heard him telling the police officer that he actually thought I was the one saying that. That was definitely not that case,” added Harding.

The original report mentions a witness who believes he saw Connor “go after” Coleman first, so at this point, details are extremely murky. But one thing is clear – Pitt players have found themselves in all kinds of trouble lately.


Keith Coleman Arrested In 2:00 AM Fight

The issues keep piling up for Pitt, as offensive lineman Keith Coleman has been arrested:

Keith Coleman, 20, a reserve offensive lineman, was arrested early this morning after an altercation in which another man suffered a broken collarbone, Pittsburgh police said.

Police Sgt. James Kohnen said Mr. Coleman was arrested at 1:48 a.m. after the fight broke out during a dispute with two other men at the intersection of Semple and Ward streets. A witness told police that Mr. Coleman spoke to two women, which upset their male companions, Sgt. Kohnen said.

Mr. Coleman told police that the other men used a racial slur to refer to him, Sgt. Kohnen said. An altercation erupted, and one of the other men was injured.

The amount of trouble Pitt players have gotten into in the past few weeks really is remarkable.


The Post-Gazette's Paul Zeise Sheds More Light On Jason Douglas and Dan Mason Incident

Paul Zeise of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette sheds a bit more light on the Jason Douglas and Dan Mason situation.

For starters, Jason Douglas has apparently had some previous team issues and Zeise speculates that Douglas will be dismissed from the program.

Dan Mason also needs some help cleaning up academic issues, so it sounds like Dave Wannstedt wants to make sure he’s not skating on this one. He also apparently wasn’t drinking as Douglas had been, which is good news.

However, it begs the question – why the heck wasn’t Mason the one driving? If he was completely sober, it makes no sense that he wouldn’t have been the one behind the wheel.

Just another poor decision.


Dan Mason Loses Starting Spot

Dave Wannstedt took action against Dan Mason, who was a passenger in the car Jason Douglas was driving, by demoting him to the second team.

“I met with Dan Mason’s mother this morning and his family,” Wannstedt said. "Dan has to understand and learn to make better decisions as far as what he is doing, where he is at and who he is with. And as a result, I moved him to second-team middle linebacker.

“As I told him this is for his good, he needs to prove to me that he can do the right things and be accountable off the field, in the classroom and on the football field and when he does that he will get his job back.

I don’t think this will be a one-game situation. From that statement, it seems as if Dave Wannstedt may take a little bit of time with this and I see it stretching out over a few games. It doesn’t look like Mason will miss any entire games and I expect him to play a great deal. But his move to the second unit definitely is not great news for Pitt. Tristan Roberts will get the starting spot and Max Gruder will move over to fill Mason’s place.


Jason Douglas Adds To Pitt's Off-Field Issues

Pitt Panthers backup running back Jason Douglas helped add to the team's off-field woes when he was arrested this week for a hit-and-run incident. Douglas is accused of driving under the influence (he's also under drinking age) and hitting a pedestrian while failing to stop. The victim is reportedly in pretty serious condition and has sustained several injuries.
The incident was just the latest in a line of issues the team has had over the past year. Earlier this year, LB Elijah Fields was removed from the team for disciplinary reasons. One of the things that landed him in hot water was posing with a large amount of money on Twitter, bringing up the question of if he was paid to play for the school. Fields had previous issues and the photo was seen as the last straw. He was expected to heavily contribute to the team this year and his dismissal was a sign that head coach Dave Wannstedt was willing to boot players of significance from the program.
Starting defensive end Jabaal Sheard ran into trouble this Summer when he was charged with assault, throwing a man through a glass window. It looked like Sheard was bound for trouble until he was able to plead guilty to lesser charges. Coach Wannstedt felt that the time he was away from the team was essentially enough of a punishment and after saying Sheard would have additional internal discipline, he was soon reinstated and did not miss any playing time.
Now Jason Douglas' incident marks the third time in less than a year when significant off-field issues have plagued Pitt players.
If what is being reported is correct, Wannstedt needs to come down hard on Douglas. I don't say that because he is a third-string running back, I say it because if Douglas is able to skate on this, Pitt will look like a laughingstock. Underage drinking happens all over the country and while a crime, is a little easier to overlook. But to get into a car after drinking more than the legal limit, hit a pedestrian, and then not stop to offer help is inexcusable. Of further annoyance, Douglas tried to use his status as a player to get off the hook:
Police said he was slow to comply with their orders to exit the vehicle, and when he spoke without prompting, he said, "Hey, I play for Pitt football. Please, don't arrest me," according to the affidavit that supports his arrest.
Starting linebacker Dan Mason was also apparently in the car, but was not charged with anything. But I'll take it a step further. If Mason was aware that Douglas hit a pedestrian and did not stop, while he may not face charges, Wannstedt needs to take action against him. Not action as severe as Douglas', but I don't think a suspension of some sort would be too much. I believe that Wannstedt would agree with the statement that he wants his players to be model as well. If that's the case, sitting idly by while a person is hit and seriously injured should be cause for some consequences.
Right now all of the details aren't out yet, so it would be unfair to make a decision yet. But if the facts are as they've been presented, then swift action needs to be taken. And while it shouldn't have any bearing on the decision, the fact that Douglas is only a little-used reserve should make Wannstedt's decision that much easier. It's true that as a head coach, Wannstedt can't stop his players from going out drinking then getting behind the wheel of a car. But his actions against players who do that can prohibit it from happening again. Anything less than a complete dismissal would be letting Douglas off the hook.
Log In Sign Up

Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SB Nation Pittsburgh

You must be a member of SB Nation Pittsburgh to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Pittsburgh. You should read them.

Join SB Nation Pittsburgh

You must be a member of SB Nation Pittsburgh to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Pittsburgh. You should read them.




Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.