NACOGDOCHES, Texas (AP) – Devonte Fields has decided not to enroll at Stephen F. Austin after learning that a suspension from TCU would also make him ineligible to play this season at the FCS school.
A day after saying the preseason Big 12 defensive player of the year would be joining the Lumberjacks, SFA said Friday that the plans had changed.
Fields was suspended by TCU last month after he surrendered to authorities on a misdemeanor assault warrant, stemming from allegations he threatened his ex-girlfriend and punched her.
“After originally agreeing to grant a release to Devonte Fields, which would allow him to enroll and play football at Stephen F. Austin, Texas Christian University has since convened a committee and declared that Fields’ violations of the student honor code has warranted his suspension from the school,” SFA said in a statement.
Stephen F. Austin said that also would make Fields ineligible at SFA, prohibiting him from participating in football-related activities there for at least one year.
“In light of these developments, Fields has decided not to enroll at SFA,” the school said.
TCU officials said Friday night that Fields’ status with the Big 12 school was unchanged.
Fields has been “separated” from TCU, meaning he is barred from the Fort Worth campus and all school activities while his case was being reviewed.
TCU has never acknowledged a meeting this week with Fields, who posted on his Twitter account he had a hearing Tuesday.
The university issued a statement after those reports that there are several parts to the process when a student is alleged to have violated the student conduct code. They include a judicial hearing before a panel of faculty and staff members reviews the case and that the process can take several days to complete, including any appeal before a final decision is rendered.
SFA said coach Clint Conque would have no comment on the matter, “stating this is a matter involving Fields and TCU.”
Considered a top NFL prospect by some, Fields had four tackles without a sack while playing only three games last season. He missed the season opener and parts of two other games for an unspecified violation of university and team rules before a season-ending foot injury that required surgery.
As a freshman in 2012 for the Horned Frogs, Fields was selected as the Big 12 defensive player of the year after he had 10 sacks and 18 1/2 tackles for loss.