West Virginia LB, Alabama transfer VanDarius Cowan suspended for NCAA issue, reports say

USATSI

West Virginia is likely in for a rebuild in 2019 -- a "Year Zero" of sorts for first-year coach Neal Brown. Those rebuilding efforts just got a little harder on the defensive side of the ball. According to EerSports.com and the Charleston Gazette-Mail, Mountaineers linebacker VanDarius Cowan has been suspended for the first four games of the season. 

EerSports reports that Cowan, a transfer from Alabama, has been sidelined by NCAA eligibility issues. West Virginia has not yet publicly noted Cowan's reported suspension. If/when that comes to fruition, Cowan will miss games against James Madison, Missouri, North Carolina State and Kansas

Cowan had been playing middle linebacker for the Mountaineers, but moved to more of an outside pass-rushing "bandit" spot as spring practices came to a close. Brown had called Cowan the team's best natural pass rusher and he figured to play an important role on the defense this season. 

Once a four-star prospect, Cowan was considered the No. 4 outside linebacker in the country per 247Sports when he initially signed with Alabama in 2017. However, this suspension would be the latest off-field incident for Cowan. He was dismissed from the Crimson Tide for violating team rules after just one season and was also reportedly on the verge of not joining the Mountaineers for spring practice this past offseason. 

CBS Sports Writer

Ben Kercheval joined CBS Sports in 2016 and has been covering college football since 2010. Before CBS, Ben worked at Bleacher Report, UPROXX Sports and NBC Sports. As a long-suffering North Texas graduate,... Full Bio

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