Tennessee football hopes to resolve player suspensions from Stokely Hall incident by end of spring
The first-year Vols coach hopes for a resolution by the end of spring football, he said Friday.
“Any of the guys that have had those issues here, no final word on any of that yet," Heupel said when asked for an update on quarterback Kaidon Salter's status. "We are going to stay with those kids, I told you from the beginning, and support those kids through the process. Once we have a final decision on all those guys, we will communicate that with you."
Tennessee will conclude spring football on April 24 with the annual Orange and White game.
"We hope that the process will be thorough and we will be able to work through it and get to the point where we are able to communicate with you where our university stands," Heupel said.
Martavius French, Isaac Washington and Aaron Willis are set to appear in court April 12 on drug-related misdemeanor charges following their March arrests stemming from a call to police about an assault and burglary at Stokely Hall on the Knoxville campus.
French and Willis face misdemeanor charges of simple drug possession and drug paraphernalia. Washington faces a misdemeanor charge of simple drug possession.
All three were suspended indefinitely March 12. A source with direct knowledge of the situation told Knox News at the time that a fourth player also was suspended indefinitely.
The UT police crime log lists the March 12 arrest of a person under age 18 on at least one misdemeanor drug charge related to the incident, but doesn't name the underage person. UT officials and police have not confirmed whether Salter, who is 17, is the minor who was arrested.
“Kaidon is part of the group of individuals that are suspended from team activities at this point," Huepel said following UT's first spring practice.
He did not offer a timetable for the group to return to practice, while indicating "that is being handled on campus."
UT student Clinton Warren, who is not on the football team, also faces a misdemeanor charge of simple possession in connection with the incident.
University police released arrest reports to Knox News on Wednesday that provided additional details about the incident.
University police initially investigated the March 9 incident as a suspected assault and burglary at Stokely Hall, but none of the students arrested was charged with assault or burglary.
French, 18, had eight grams of marijuana and two scales used to weigh marijuana, according to the arrest report. French told police he obtained the marijuana and one of the scales from a Stokely Hall dorm room.
Washington, 18, had seven grams of marijuana, according to the UTPD report. He also said he obtained it from a Stokely Hall dorm room.
Willis, 19, had nine grams of marijuana that he told police came from the Stokely Hall dorm room, according to the report. Police also found a cigar bong "in close proximity" to Willis' property, the report says.
A witness reported to UT police that their roommate answered the door and was assaulted by one male while three or four other males entered the apartment, went into another room and took items belonging to the individual who had answered the door, according to a UT public safety notice issued on March 9.
Salter, Willis and Washington enrolled early as members of Tennessee's 2021 recruiting class. French was a freshman during the 2020 season but did not appear in any games.
Willis was the top-rated recruit in UT's 2021 class. Salter is a highly touted quarterback who is expected to compete with graduate transfer Hendon Hooker and returners Harrison Bailey and Brain Maurer.
This story will be updated.
USA TODAY Network reporter Blake Toppmeyer contributed to this report.
Mike Wilson covers University of Tennessee athletics. Email him at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @ByMikeWilson. If you enjoy Mike’s coverage, consider a digital subscription that will allow you access to all of it.