Looks can, of course, be deceiving. But there's no question things currently look bad for Jordan Jefferson.
LSU's senior starting quarterback will, at least, not be arrested Monday following his involvement in Friday morning's Baton Rouge bar fight; a scheduled meeting between police, Jefferson, and three other Bayou Bengal players (Jarvis Landry, Josh Johns and Chris Davenport) has been delayed until Tuesday, at the request of the attorney of the four players.
But that attorney has not ruled out an arrest at that time, and if police believe it is still "likely" they book one of the "individuals associated with the fight" (as officer Donald Stone said Sunday), that player could well be Jefferson.
According to a Stone statement late Sunday, police were told by "multiple witnesses" that one of the football players involved in the fight had kicked another individual in the head -- though Stone declined to specify which football player the witnesses had named. The victim was eventually taken to the hospital.
But despite Stone's reticence, witnesses speaking to television station WAFB -- with one notable exception -- were willing and able to name Jefferson as the player who'd delivered the kick to the head. The description of the incident, according to the WAFB report (emphasis added):
Several people who claim to have witnessed the incident tell 9NEWS that around 2 a.m. Friday, a young man driving a truck blew his horn to get a group of people blocking the driveway to move out of the way at Shady's Bar on East Boyd Ave. That's when they say a group of people pulled the driver out of the truck and began beating him. That's when they say a Marine who had just returned from training ran to assist the driver and was beaten and thrown to the ground. Multiple people who claim to have witnessed the incident tell 9NEWS LSU quarterback Jordan Jefferson then kicked the Marine in the head.It's very much worth noting that that account isn't the only one of the incident; "at least one witness" told WAFB that Jefferson was not involved in the fracas and never threw a punch.
One young man who gave those same details to WAFB 9NEWS also told the same details to Baton Rouge Police.
But putting the proverbial 2 and 2 together seems to equal trouble for Jefferson all the same. We know that witnesses have already told police that a football player kicked someone in the head. We know that several alleged witnesses -- at least one of which has also repeated that account to the police -- have told WAFB that it was Jefferson kicking that someone in the head. And we know police felt secure enough in their initial round of interviews to call a second-degree battery arrest "likely."
Does all of that add up to the arrest that might keep Jefferson out of the epic season opener against Oregon? Not yet, it sure doesn't. Jefferson's attorney has suggested that police have yet to speak to witnesses that might have differing accounts of the incident, and it's entirely possible that either the player-in-question isn't Jefferson or that police won't bother with an arrest for whatever reason.
What we can say for certain is this: whatever the eventual fallout, the events of last Friday morning aren't going to do any shred of good for LSU, or Jordan Jefferson.