Six UT-Chattanooga players cleared of rape charges

By wire services
Published January 19, 2006

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. - A judge threw out charges Wednesday against six University of Tennessee-Chattanooga football players accused of gang-raping a female student.

The six players hugged each other and celebrated quietly after the decision was announced by Hamilton County General Sessions Court Judge Clarence Shattuck.

At the preliminary hearing, Shattuck heard a full day of testimony, including the alleged victim's description of players taking advantage of her drunken condition and her resistance to their sexual advances.

Shattuck said the testimony offered no proof that she could not have left the apartment.

The six players were kicked out of the university after the student told investigators that she got intoxicated at a fraternity party and was later repeatedly sexually assaulted.

SOUTH FLORIDA: The Bulls picked up oral commitments Tuesday from Zach Herrmann, a 6-foot-3, 315-pound offensive lineman from East Lake, and LaBrandon Glover, a 6-foot-1, 215-pound linebacker from Pensacola, according to recruiting site USFnation.com. Herrmann is the third offensive lineman, all from the Tampa Bay area, to commit to USF, joining Dixie Hollins' James Boger and Bradenton Manatee's Jeff Ide. Glover had committed to Mississippi State but changed after an official visit to USF this weekend.

FRESNO STATE: Coach Pat Hill agreed to a contract extension through 2010 after interviewing for several NFL positions.

NEW MEXICO: Former UCLA coach Bob Toledo was hired as offensive coordinator. Lobos coach Rocky Long worked under Toledo as UCLA's defensive coordinator in 1996 and 1997.

SOUTHERN MISS: Coach Jeff Bower agreed to a two-year extension, keeping him on the sideline through the 2009 season.

FLORIDA GULF COAST: The university in Estero voted to compete in Division I, a transition that will take five years to complete. The school, which opened in 1997, hopes to receive an invitation from the Atlantic Sun Conference by July. The Eagles, who have no plans to start a football program, will be eligible in all sports in the 2011-12 season.

Times staff writer Greg Auman contributed to this report.