Michigan senior OT Taylor Lewan will be charged with three misdemeanors following an altercation last December in Ann Arbor, according to court records (first reported by The Ann Arbor News).
He is scheduled to be arraigned on April 8 on one count of aggravated assault and two counts of assault or assault and battery.
The incident occurred outside an Ann Arbor bar at 12:30 a.m. on Dec. 1 when two Ohio State fans claimed an unprovoked Lewan punched and attacked them only hours after Ohio State defeated Michigan. Bucknuts, an Ohio State insider website, first reported the story on Dec. 23.
When asked about the altercation at the NFL Combine, Lewan downplayed the events.
“I wasn't in any fight,” Lewan said. “I was actually breaking something up. Some guy said I slugged him.”
Detective Lt. Robert Pfannes confirmed that Lewan was the only person facing charges from that specific incident.
Lewan, who is projected to be a top-15 pick in 2014 NFL Draft, has faced some scrutiny through the draft process from both NFL teams and the media for his undisciplined attitude, on and off the field. As a four-year starter at Michigan, he admittedly has too many personal fouls on his resume, resulting from unsportsmanlike and drive-altering penalties. On-field intensity is something NFL teams can excuse, but when the wild intensity stretches past the playing field, then it becomes more of a concern.
So how does this affect his NFL Draft future? Not surprisingly, Lewan has been red-flagged by several NFL teams for his overaggressive demeanor, but the two-time Big Ten offensive lineman of the year needs to be upfront with teams regarding his extracurricular incidents and convince evaluators he can stay clean off the field. Talking to NFL contacts, no one views Lewan as a “criminal” but they do have questions about his maturity and overall discipline to be a professional.
At the Combine, Lewan reinforced that the allegations aren't a reflection of his character.
“That's not who I am off the field,” Lewan said. “It's not the kind of person I am. It might seem that way because of the way I play football but it's not who I am.”
Is Lewan still in the first round discussion? Yes, but there will be several teams watching this incident with great interest to see how it plays out between now and May 8.