CLEMSON - Clemson University football coach Tommy Bowden Friday denied
reports that three football players had been dismissed from the team, but
stopped short of saying there was no criminal investigation focusing on the
Speaking to reporters following Friday's spring workout, Bowden answered
"no" when asked if defensive linemen Paul White, Marcus Lewis and Tyrone
Dickerson had been dismissed from the team.
However, none of the three were at practice again Friday afternoon.
"Two of them are injured, and one has some personal problems," Bowden said.
Asked which player had the personal problems, Bowden said, "I don't think I
need to answer that."
The Daily Journal/Messenger reported Thursday that a source close to the
situation said White, Lewis and Dickerson had been dismissed from the team
after they became the focus of a criminal investigation involving credit
card fraud and/or theft.
The source said charges could be filed against the players early next week.
When asked if the three were indeed the target of a criminal investigation,
the coach paused for a moment before avoiding the question in typical Bowden
"Am I the chief of police or a football coach?" he said with a laugh. "What
do I look like, Wyatt Earp or a football coach? I spend most of my time out
here (practice fields) instead of with a magnifying glass over there."
If the allegations prove true, this would be White's second brush with the
law in four months. On Nov. 28, he and former teammate Eugene Coon, along
with two other Clemson students, were indicted on federal counterfeiting
That case is still pending. If convicted White - who was charged with
conspiracy to commit counterfeit, a felony - faces up to five years
Dan Scott is the host of SportsTalk (10AM-Noon) on 104.9 FM in Upstate SC and
Managing Editor of Seneca Daily Journal/Clemson Daily Messenger