In an official statement released by the University of Idaho on Sunday, quarterback Dominique Blackman and linebacker Conrad Scheidt have been dismissed from Idaho’s football program and tight-end Taylor Elmo has been suspended indefinitely.
Coming nearly a week to the day after Robb Akey was relieved of his duties as head coach, rumors of the dismissals started surfacing late Saturday afternoon when sources close to the team told various media outlets that Blackman and Scheidt were cut from the team for alleged violations to player protocol at the University. The official statement from Idaho confirmed these early sources as Blackman and Scheidt were released for “a violation of team rules.”
The suspension of Elmo, confirmed by Idaho athletic director Rob Spear Saturday night, came as a byproduct of an inflammatory message Elmo made on the social media site Twitter in the wake of Akey’s firing.
The tweet, which has since been deleted from Elmo’s account, criticized Spear for firing Akey with a month still left in the season.
“U of idaho is stupid as hell for what they did,” Elmo tweeted. “Fire a man to keep your own job???”
The official statement by the university is that Elmo will be suspended indefinitely (with the chance to return later this season) for violating the athletic department policy in regards to social media.
“It depends on how Taylor responds,” Spear said about the chances of Elmo returning to the team.
Interim head coach Jason Gesser was not readily available to comment about the situation.
Blackman, a junior transfer who came to the Vandals by way of Old Dominion last year, has thrown for 1,610 yards and nine touchdowns in 2012. Named the starter at quarterback in mid-August, Blackman was suspended for undisclosed reasons at the beginning of the season and sat out Idaho’s season opening loss to Eastern Washington.
Scheidt, who was been with the team since 2009, started in three games this season before sustaining a fracture in his face during practice that put him on the sideline. Since the injury, he hasn’t played.
Elmo has only appeared in four games this season, catching two passes for 11 yards. In 2011, he played all 12 games and received a lot of praise from Akey for stepping in for tight-end Daniel Hardy when he became injured.
Idaho, 1-7 on the season, hosts San Jose State on Saturday in the Kibbie Dome at 2 p.m. after its only bye week of the season.
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