Never Forget 31-0
This guy is one of the best guards in the big ten, he lit up OSU earlier this season.....:(By TODD DVORAK, Associated Press Writer
February 2, 2005
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) -- Iowa basketball star Pierre Pierce was kicked off the team Wednesday while under investigation by West Des Moines police for intent to commit sexual abuse, burglary and other crimes at the home of a former girlfriend.
The 21-year-old Pierce met for more than two hours Wednesday night with investigators who are considering whether to file criminal charges against the junior guard, Pierce's attorney, Alfredo Parrish said.
``He answered all of their questions,'' said Parrish, who declined to comment on details of the interview but earlier characterized the incident as a misunderstanding.
http://us.ard.yahoo.com/SIG=12938ah...//www.nflplayers.com/news/player_journal.aspxParrish said Iowa athletic officials acted prematurely in taking action against Pierce.
``They should have waited until all the facts were out,'' Parrish said. ``By them jumping way ahead of the curve ... we believe they have not acted either in the best interest of the university or the best interest of the students, and clearly not in the best interest of Pierre Pierce.''
A police report estimated damage from last week's episode at about $1,300, including a television, stereo, photographs and bedroom furniture.
``Effective immediately, Pierre Pierce has been dismissed from the University of Iowa men's basketball team,'' coach Steve Alford said in a statement. ``I regret this step has become necessary, but Pierre has betrayed the trust we placed in him when he was given a second chance two years ago.''
In 2002, Pierce was charged with third-degree sexual abuse. He later pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of assault causing injury, but the case and the way in which it was handled by university administrators triggered two faculty-led inquiries.
Pierce received a deferred judgment, so the charge was erased from his record after he successfully completed a year of probation, counseling and 200 hours of community service.
He sat out the 2002-03 basketball season as a redshirt year and did not lose any eligibility. Pierce returned to the team last season.
His dismissal leaves a big scoring gap on a team that was ranked in the Top 25 as recently as last week. Pierce has led Iowa (15-5, 3-4 Big Ten) with a 17.8-point average, and he scored 25 points to help beat Indiana 72-57 Saturday in the Hawkeyes' most recent game.
``Coach Steve Alford, athletic director Bob Bowlsby and I agree that it was time to take decisive action by removing Mr. Pierce from the basketball team permanently,'' Iowa president David Skorton said. ``We agree that Mr. Pierce has violated the standards of behavior that we expect and demand from all of our student athletes.''
Bowlsby said Pierce's academic status is not affected. ``Whether charges are filed or not, it seems to me ... he's violated the trust we gave him two years ago,'' Bowlsby said, adding that Pierce's actions put the team ``in an embarrassing and compromising situation.''