Blue and Gold Illustrated

Preseason 2016

Blue & Gold Illustrated: America's Foremost Authority on Notre Dame Football

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34 PRESEASON 2016 BLUE & GOLD ILLUSTRATED BY MATT JONES N otre Dame's depth chart took a hit two weeks before kick‑ off, when head coach Brian Kelly dismissed starting se‑ nior safety Max Redfield following an arrest in the late evening hours of Aug. 19. Four other players — sophomore linebacker Te'von Coney, freshman wide receiver Kevin Stepherson, sophomore running back Dexter Wil‑ liams and sophomore cornerback Ashton White — were arrested along with Redfield and booked in Fulton County, Ind., jail on misdemeanor charges of possession of marijuana after a traffic stop. Redfield, Stepherson and Williams also were charged with possession of a handgun without a license, accord‑ ing to Indiana State Police. The police report read as follows: "Trooper Reason initiated a traffic stop on a 2007 Ford Focus on U.S. 31, near Fulton County Road 375 North, for allegedly traveling 73 miles per hour in a posted 60 miles per hour zone. The Ford also allegedly had an improper taillight. While Trooper Reason was speaking with the driver, identified as White, he allegedly smelled the odor of marijuana ema‑ nating from the car. Trooper Reason utilized his narcotics detecting police dog, Cartoush, to conduct a free air sniff around the Ford. The dog indi‑ cated the presence of illegal narcotics inside the vehicle. During a subse‑ quent search of the car, officers alleg‑ edly found marijuana and a loaded handgun." Kelly wasted no time in booting Redfield, dismissing the Mission Viejo, Calif., native from the program Aug. 21. He also suspended senior cornerback Devin Butler, who was arrested in a separate incident later that evening, indefinitely. "In making this announcement it is important to stress that all of the players involved in these two inci‑ dents remain subject to justice sys‑ tem and university discipline, and those processes could yet impact their standing with the university and the team," Kelly said in the statement. "At Notre Dame, where we place so much importance on the integration of students who are athletes into the broader university, the primary re‑ sponsibility for discipline lies, as it should, with the university's Office of Community Standards. "But even within that system, there are times when a player 's conduct so clearly fails to meet the standards I have set for our football team that it is appropriate to take action inde‑ pendent of any decision that might be made by the Office of Community Standards. This is such an instance. The expectations we set for the mem‑ bers of our team are high, but they are especially so for the upperclassmen who are expected to provide leader‑ ship and a positive example to the other members of the team. Max … failed in that regard and so lost the privilege of continuing to be part of our team." Kelly said Coney, Stepherson, Wil‑ liams and White will be punished internally by the university. Those players, all of who projected as back‑ ups in 2016, "remain subject to the justice system and university disci‑ pline," Kelly said in the statement, meaning the players could be pun‑ ished further. School discipline is the responsibil‑ ity of Notre Dame's Office of Com‑ munity Standards. Redfield, a 6‑1, 205‑pound former five‑star prospect, was sent home from the Fiesta Bowl last season for violating team rules. He was Notre Dame's fourth‑leading tackler last season with 64 stops and had seem‑ ingly turned a corner through the first two weeks of preseason practice. "It was great to just grow within myself and understand what I need to do better and the details I need to hone on a play‑by‑play basis to get the consistency that I'm looking for — and the coaches as well," Redfield said Aug. 6. "There was competition as well, so there's kind of a micro‑ scope on myself. Every little thing I'm doing wrong, just kind of analyze that and eliminate it." Kelly said Redfield — who was Arrested Development Six Irish players are involved in two separate incidents 16 days prior to the season opener Senior safety Max Redfield, a former five-star prospect, was kicked off the team Aug. 21 after being arrested with four of his teammates following a traffic stop in Fulton County, Ind. PHOTO BY JOE RAYMOND

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