February 16, 2009
I will confess: Like almost any other student at Southern Miss, I had my share of wild encounters on 38th Street, a tiny residential strip of houses torn asunder each spring by a new crop of undergrads being tossed out of their first off-campus digs. The next person to actually see the end of a 38th Street eviction party that isn't broken up by cops will be the first that I'm aware of.
But naked Jell-o wrestling, lighting your own vodka-drenched arm on fire and belting out Proclaimers songs at the top of your lungs is all in good fun. Shooting off guns with weed in the house, it turns out, eh, not so much:
Southern Miss football players Damion Fletcher and Brennan Houston were arrested late Sunday night at the players’ 38th Avenue apartment complex.
Fletcher was arrested by Hattiesburg Police on charges of discharging a firearm while Houston was brought in and charged with possession of marijuana.
This is the same apartment complex where USM linebacker Korey Williams suffered a broken jaw in a melee that included gunfire last October, which might be a sign the school needs to get its
investments players out of such a volatile environment. (Oddly enough, the witness to both incidents in the newspaper accounts is the same guy, an adjunct I recognize as a serial letter-writer to the student paper. When you've been living in student housing long enough for an alum to recognize your name in multiple accounts of gunshots in your complex, it might be time to move on your own self.)
Fletcher, off three straight 1,300-yard seasons, is only the leading rusher in school history and the active career leader in rushing yards nationally. So, you know, no biggie, unless you put stock in things like a proven, consistent track record of performance no other player in the same position has ever matched over a comparable period of time. The Eagles stole a solid running back prospect, Kendrick Hardy, away from a couple SEC schools earlier this month, but if this is the end for Fletcher -- coach Larry Fedora is mum on discipline -- the torch will passed much sooner than anyone would have liked.
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Hat tip: Trae.