ES with Moss’ release, hearing scheduled and and attorney’s comment
MADISON, Wis. (AP) _ Wisconsin tailback Brent Moss, a Rose Bowl MVP on the verge of breaking the school’s career rushing mark, was suspended from the team Thursday after his arrest on a cocaine possession charge.
Moss was jailed early Thursday after an anti-drug task force pulled him over and reportedly found two rocks of crack cocaine in one of his socks.
Moss left jail Thursday night after Circuit Judge Jack Aulik authorized his release on a $2,500 signature bond, co-signed by Moss and his father, Henry. District Attorney William Foust and defense attorney Gerald Mowris both requested his release.
No formal charges were filed by the district attorney pending an initial court appearance scheduled at 10 a.m. next Thursday.
″He feels very badly about it. It’s perhaps not what it seems,″ Mowris said. ″He hopes that people wait until they hear all the facts before they make a judgment.″
Wisconsin coach Barry Alvarez, who suspended his star senior ″pending a legal resolution,″ said he was ″shocked″ by the player’s ″apparent involvement.″
″It’s been a very difficult day,″ Alvarez said. ″I feel as if it was one of my own children.″
Moss’ teammates were also troubled by his arrest.
″It’s as though you have a brother that’s done something that isn’t supposed to be done,″ said senior offensive lineman Joe Rudolph.
″I’m not mad at him, I feel hurt for him,″ echoed senior defensive back Jamel Brown. ″It’s as if you have a family member do something. Obviously, you feel, ‘Why did you do that?’ You feel hurt. And at the same time you feel sad, you feel upset. There’s a lot of emotions that go through you.″
″It’s tragic whenever young people get involved in drugs in any manner,″ Alvarez said.
Because the Badgers have just two games remaining, Moss’ brilliant but now tarnished college career is apparently over and his stock in next spring’s NFL draft now unsettled.
″I hope this doesn’t destroy him, you know?″ Moss’ mother, Elaine, said from her home in Racine. ″He’s always been a decent kid. He wasn’t a real big problem. He never has been.″
Moss, 22, was known for his visits to church groups and classrooms to talk about the dangers of drugs and how he had escaped the streets, where two of his boyhood friends had been shot to death.
He was one of the most honored players in Badgers football history and had been touted at the start of the season as a Heisman Trophy hopeful.
Last season, he set a school record by rushing for 1,637 yards and was named the Big Ten’s MVP after leading the Badgers to a 10-1-1 mark and the first Rose Bowl victory in school history.
Alvarez called an afternoon team meeting to discuss the arrest, and several players said after practice the gathering was therapeutic.
″Some guys felt angry. Some were sad. Some didn’t know how to feel,″ Rudolph said. ″So, it was important for us to get together and address the closeness we need to come out of this.″
Police issued a statement Thursday saying Moss and another man were arrested after a traffic stop by officers from the Blue Blanket anti-drug task force.
Moss was in possession of four-tenths of a gram of crack with a street value of $50, police spokeswoman Dorothy Doheny said. Moss also was accused of speeding and failing to signal a turn.
Gerrick Hawkins, 21, who was a passenger in the car driven by Moss, was arrested on a police charge of delivery of crack cocaine and open intoxicants in a motor vehicle, Doheny said.
The Capital Times, citing a law enforcement source it didn’t name, said Moss was stopped after police observed the passenger getting out of the car, going into a residence to make a suspected drug buy and then returning to the car.
Police found the cocaine in one of Moss’ socks, the newspaper said.
″How stupid of him. Oh God, this is really awful,″ Elaine Moss said. ″I’m just blown away with this. I can’t even think. I can’t believe he was involved with something like that. I just can’t believe that. I’m not disputing what the people say. I’m just having a hard time digesting it ....″
Moss has had scrapes with the law before.
In June 1992, Moss was cited by a university police officer for possession of marijuana on campus. He paid a $93 fine after pleading no contest.
In September 1992, he was charged with domestic disorderly conduct after a fight with his girlfriend. He paid a $63 fine.
Moss had missed two games this season with a sprained ankle and knee but returned to action Oct. 29 against Michigan.
Moss gained 833 yards on 156 carries this season, an average of 5.3 yards per carry and 119 per game, which ranks 14th in the country. He is second on Wisconsin’s career rushing list with 3,428 yards, trailing Billy Marek’s 3,709 from 1972-75.