Lyle McCombs, UConn’s leading rusher the past three seasons, will no longer be a member of the team moving forward. McCombs, who would have been a fifth-year senior in the upcoming season, will be allowed to graduate, according to Desmond Conner of the Hartford Courant.
From what Conner reported and a statement from new UConn head coach Bob Diaco, it looks like some disciplinary issues may have led to this decision.
“Attending school at the University of Connecticut is a special privilege as is being a member of the UConn football team,” Diaco said in a statement. “With that privilege also come certain responsibilities and expectations. We wish Lyle only the best in his future endeavors as he moves on from UConn.”
Conner then reached Diaco by phone, where the coach said that “an ongoing lack of meeting the expectations of a member of the student body and of the team” led to the decision for the team to part ways with McCombs. McCombs ran for 670 yards and five touchdowns in 2013.
“And at the end of the day it’s a privilege to be a part of this school and its student body and a privilege to be on this football team and part of the athletic department and to have that privilege you’re held to particular standards and standards of conduct, period. End of sentence. If you’re not going to assimilate and meet those marks then you’re not going to be a part of it. That’s it. No matter who you are. It does not matter what your physical, tangible, on the field production is. It is irrelevant,” Diaco said.
McCombs is the fourth-leading rusher in program history with 2,681 total yards. After redshirting in 2010, McCombs ran for 1,151 yards and seven touchdowns as a redshirt freshman in 2011. In 2012 he ran for 860 yards and six scores.
With McCombs now out of the picture, the junior Max DeLorenzo (349 yards and five TDs) is the team’s leading returning ball carrier. Rivals three-star recruit Arkeel Newsome also could be in the mix for carries.
The Huskies went 3-9 last season.
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