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UF's backup QB arrested

ANTONYA ENGLISH
Published October 9, 2004

GAINESVILLE - Suspended Florida backup quarterback Justin Midgett was arrested Thursday morning after failing to heed a University Police officer's warning about driving without a motor vehicle registration.

Midgett, a redshirt freshman from Punta Gorda, was arrested for riding a motor scooter without a registration shortly after he was ordered not to.

According to court and arrest records, Midgett was driving a yellow Kymco Cobra motor scooter near the Keys Complex on campus at about 9:55 a.m. when UPD officer Matt Davis pulled him over because the scooter did not have a visible tag.

Davis issued Midgett a traffic citation, advised him it was a criminal offense to drive the vehicle without a valid registration and ordered him not to drive again until he had proper registration, arrest records say. Approximately 15 minutes later, Midgett was spotted by Davis driving westbound on Stadium Road at North-South Drive near Ben Hill Griffin Stadium. He was pulled over, arrested, transported to the UPD station for processing then taken to the Alachua County Jail.

Midgett, 19, was released on $1,000 bond Friday morning.

He has been suspended indefinitely since the week of Sept. 11 for disciplinary reasons, including skipping class.

Vols coach's fine upheld

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. - The SEC executive committee has denied Tennessee's appeal of a $10,000 fine for coach Phillip Fulmer's absence at media days this summer, a school official disclosed.

"I'm not totally surprised," said athletic director Mike Hamilton said, who added the decision came down Sept. 22. "We feel like we obviously support the letter of the rule. We still felt like we abided with the spirit of the rule to make sure coaches are participating in media days."

The SEC adopted a rule in June that fines universities for not attending media days.

Fulmer was advised by his attorneys to not go to Birmingham, Ala., in July to avoid legal entanglements with lawsuits stemming from NCAA recruiting violations at Alabama. Fulmer stayed in Knoxville and spoke by conference call.

The fine will be paid by the athletic department.

AUBURN: The firm that warned of an $8-million overrun in improvements at Jordan-Hare Stadium was rehired to complete a scaled-down design. Trahan Architects met the $29-million budget with its latest design, which trustees approved Thursday.

The new design scraps plans for a kitchen, elevator and structural expansion of the stadium.

Interim school president Ed Richardson said he gave Trahan another chance in part because an internal review found the athletic department bore most of the blame for driving up the cost.

LSU: Linebacker E.J. Kuale was suspended for today's game against Florida for his involvement in an off-campus fight Thursday. Coach Nick Saban said the suspension could be extended after an investigation.

Kuale, a junior from Daytona Beach, has appeared in all five games this season, starting three, with 12 tackles and two sacks.

SOUTH CAROLINA: Senior quarterback Dondrial Pinkins is doubtful for today's game against Mississippi because of a bruised right shoulder. Sophomore Syvelle Newton, who has split time with Pinkins, would make his first SEC start.

VIRGINIA: Coach Al Groh said to not read into the fact Wali Lundy did not return to Thursday's 30-10 victory after fumbling at the Clemson 6 during the third quarter. Alvin Pearman replaced Lundy and scored twice on 2-yard runs.

Groh said Pearman stayed in because he was running well. But he also called Lundy's fumble, only Virginia's second turnover this season, "a very harmful turnover."

Last season, after Pearman fumbled the ball away twice in a loss at South Carolina, he got only 10 carries during the next two games and was replaced by Lundy.

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