Whither Jevon Pugh?

Among the collective yawns over the UI's unceremonious dumping of Douglas, Everson, and Satterfield has been the issue of tailback Jevon Pugh.

Recall, if you will, that Everson and Satterfield were suspended back in October immediately following an alleged sexual assault (though the investigation wasn't started and the allegations weren't made public for nearly a month; keep it classy, Mims). The subsequent investigation of three players named no names; that was the Register's doing, outing Everson, Satterfield, and Pugh. Pugh was never suspended; indeed, while the two DB's were taken off the sidelines, never to play for the UI again, Pugh was busy scoring the winning touchdown the very next week. He was, to our knowledge, never arrested, suspended, or otherwise reprimanded for any role in the assault. The contrast is stark: swift and severe disciplinary action against two, and absolutely nothing for the other.

Fast-forward one month, to last week. GoldPantsPal Eric Page cites a source close to the program confirming that Pugh, Everson, and Satterfield--the earlier investigated players--had been dismissed from the team. Even the mildest of cynics could have reasonably concluded that Pugh's role in the incident had been substantial enough that he was no longer welcome with the team. Between then and yesterday, when the official announcement (with Douglas and sans Pugh) came out, two tailbacks committed and a third expressed interest in the prospect of playing right away and starting for four years.

All the while, no indication that Pugh did anything wrong. Two separate instances of the media casting serious doubt on Pugh's standing with the team. And a bizarre silence from the coaching staff on the matter.

Set aside the fact that, as a near-mortal lock to be on the two-deeps at tailback, Pugh stands to play a critical role on the team next year. His level of contribution to the team is incidental in the matter. Someone's got to stand up for a Hawkeye that's being completely hung out to dry. We'd sure as hell like to see it from Ferentz or his staff, and we sure wouldn't mind even a statement from a teammate.

Now, if Pugh has made up his mind and is actually leaving, then for his sake, make it official. Otherwise, let us know he's back. There's nothing to be gained by any party in this matter, be it Pugh or the team, to keep him twisting in the wind like this.

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