ATHENS, Ga. — Isaiah Crowell was dismissed from the Georgia football team after an early Friday morning arrest on weapons charges.
Crowell, who was a rising sophomore tailback, was stopped at a police checkpoint near the University of Georgia campus. Athens-Clarke police booked the 19-year-old into jail at 3:37 a.m. on two felony charges – possession of a weapon in a school zone and possession of a firearm with an altered identification – and the misdemeanor charge of carrying a concealed firearm.
Crowell was arrested at about 2:20 a.m. at the intersection of East Campus Road and East Green Street, police said. He and four passengers – all Georgia football players – were heading home from Aftermath, a downtown Athens nightclub, Crowell told police.
An officer asked Crowell, the driver, why he wasn’t wearing a seatbelt, and the football player replied he had “taken it off to reach for things while approaching the check,” according to the arrest report.
The officer smelled a strong odor of marijuana coming from the car, but failed to find contraband on any of the five occupants following pat-downs. None of the other football players in Crowell’s car were charged.
After Crowell consented to a search of his car, an officer found a 9 mm Luger pistol with the serial number scratched off under the driver’s seat.
Crowell insisted he didn’t know the gun was in the car, and mentioned that he allows others to drive it, police said.
The officer noted in her report that Crowell appeared nervous during the search.
Later, in Athens-Clarke County Magistrate Court, a judge granted Crowell a $6,000 bond and placed him on a 10 p.m. curfew.
Crowell was released from the Clarke County Jail on Friday afternoon.
Crowell was ranked the country’s No. 1 running back and No. 4 prospect overall by ESPN Recruiting in 2011, but he had a rocky first season with the Bulldogs last year.
The sophomore ran 185 times for 850 yards with five touchdowns as a freshman, but was dogged by disciplinary problems throughout the summer.
He was benched for the first quarter of the Vanderbilt matchup in October, and sat out the entire game against New Mexico State the following month after reportedly failing a drug test.
The Georgia athletic department put out a news release Friday evening to announce that Georgia football coach Mark Richt had dismissed Crowell from the team.
“We have a dedicated and committed group of men who are working hard to prepare for the coming season,” Richt said in the news release. “Our total focus will be directed toward the team effort.”