Suspension of Nate Miles Rocks UCONN

Just weeks before the start of the College Basketball season, UCONN’s Men’s team made headlines last week when freshman basketball player Nate Miles was reportedly expelled from the school. http://sports.espn.go.com/ncf/news/story?id=3623177&campaign=rss&source=ESPNHeadlines The 6-7 freshman forward was expelled after allegedly violating a restraining order less than 20 minutes after receiving it.  Reports indicate that an unnamed woman alleged that Miles attempted to force her to have sex (the details of her allegations were made public, but they need not be reproduced here).  That event led to the restraining order, and a subsequent phone call (from Miles to the woman), is the alleged basis for the expulsion.

UCONN acted swiftly in holding a hearing and ordering expulsion.  Miles’ guardian, Sean Patterson, was quoted as saying that Miles was “railroaded”. Regardless of the propriety of the expulsion or the administrative hearing, the Miles case highlights the often uncomfortable interplay between universities and the legal system.  Rules in the criminal justice system differ from those on campus.

Miles’ court case was continued until November, and there is a strong possibility that charges will ultimately be dismissed if Miles fulfills counseling requirements.  The potential of such a seemingly innocuous resolution didn’t prevent UCONN from moving swiftly from expelling Miles.  One can at least wonder whether UCONN would have reacted differently if Miles was considered an important piece for the upcoming season.  At least one commentator suggests that Miles won’t be missed at Storrs.  http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/blog/index?entryID=3623640&name=katz_andy

Miles can still appeal the University’s decision, and rumors suggest that he will.  Commentators have been quick to dismiss Miles as a bad apple and have repeatedly cited to his attending at least five high schools as evidence of his instability.  http://www.courant.com/services/newspaper/printedition/sports/hc-jeffcol1003.artoct03,0,5622474.column.  However, his side of the story has not yet been publicized, and under the University code, it need not be.

Jim Calhoun’s program has come under increased scrutiny in recent years after a string of disciplinary and legal incidents have lead to multiple expulsions and suspensions.  The University acted decisively this time and avoided the controversey that surrounded the Marcus Williams decision.  ctsportslaw.com will continue to monitor Miles’ efforts to appeal and any further legal proceedings.  In the interim, we welcome your thougts on this case and the legal woes of the team.

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