Posted by Jerry Hinnen
With the 2010 season well behind us but spring camps still weeks away, it's prime season for offseason malfeasance and player arrests, as two players in the former Big 12 North have illustrated.
One is Missouri junior defensive tackle Jimmy Burge, who was arrested near Columbia Jan. 17 after several items of marijuana-related paraphernalia were found in his vehicle during a traffic stop. The arrest is Burge's second in less than four months after being cited in October for drinking while driving.
Burge was suspended for two games following that incident. A Missouri official said that "any discipline measures will be handled internally" in this case. Burge started six games a year ago and would be expected to hold onto that position this fall for the Tigers, assuming he remains with the team.
Perhaps on even thinner ice is Iowa State linebacker Matt Tau'fo'ou, who was arrested in the wee hours of Saturday morning and charged with drunken driving after a blood-alcohol test. He has been suspended indefinitely by ISU head coach Paul Rhoads "for failing to comply with team expectations and policies."
As with Burge, the run-in with the law is the second for Tau'fo'ou during his stay in Ames; he was also charged with fifth-degree misdemeanor theft in September 2009 after reportedly taking a piece of computer equipment from an ISU bookstore. The transfer from the College of San Mateo started two games in 2010 and made 20 tackles.
With the North dissolved and the Tigers and Cyclones tossed back into the mix with Oklahoma and Texas, no doubt this is a critical offseason for both programs ... and no doubt Gary Pinkel and Rhoads will hope this is as noisy as that offseason gets.