After two weeks of speculation and uncertainty, police have formally charged Ohio State running back Jaamal Berry with assault and disorderly conduct. He's also been suspended indefinitely until the charges are resolved.
On Oct. 21, a 21-year-old man, identified in the police report as "John Doe," said Berry hit him with a closed fist and caused injuries to his head, face, neck, back and hand that required immediate medical attention. The man filed a civil lawsuit last week charging assault and battery and ethnic intimidation . He's seeking at least $25,000 in compensatory damages and an equal amount in punitive damages.
Last month, Berry ended up in the Ohio State emergency medical center after a bizarre incident in which he was accused of attacking another student in an apparent state of delirium. A professor who saw the incident described Berry as "clearly out of sorts and… quite disconnected from his surroundings," and the initial report from the responding officer said Berry "appeared confused and disoriented and was unable to tell me his name." No charges were filed in that case.
Other than being charged with felony drug possession shortly after arriving at Ohio State in 2009, Berry has had no other run-ins with the law and has not, at least to public knowledge, battled any sort of mental illness issues.
Berry is a former top-100 recruit, but hasn't exactly been a major contributor to the Buckeyes as a third-year sophomore. He has five yards on three carries, and though he dressed for last week's game against Wisconsin, he didn't see the field behind Dan Herron, Jordan Hall and Carlos Hyde on the depth chart. He's been the starting kick returner and has returned seven kicks for a 21.4 yard average. For his career, Berry has played in 18 games and has 271 rushing yards and one touchdown on 35 carries.