March 29, 2012

Rogers suspended, future uncertain

Da'Rick Rogers didn't participate in Tennessee's practice Thursday morning on Haslam Field, and the enigmatic wide receiver's future with the Vols is unclear with his latest suspension from team activities.

Head coach Derek Dooley confirmed what myriad reporters already had seen --- that the rising junior wideout from Calhoun, Ga., did not join his teammates on the field early this morning after first rousing attention to his situation when Rogers tweeted late Wednesday night, implying he was heading to "Georgia State."

Rogers has, indeed, told some close to him that he wishes to transfer to Georgia State, but that scenario is highly unlikely for a multitude of reasons. Rogers would still have to sit out a year if he chose to leave Tennessee for the GSU program, which is transition to full Football Bowls Subdivision status after a transition period. Additionally, Rogers would have to improve his academic standing, according to sources who have indicated Rogers would have been ineligible for a bowl game had the Vols' season not ended last November in a loss at Kentucky.

While a variety of stories --- some substantiated; others unable to be verified --- have dogged Rogers, he has starred on the field. Earning consensus All-Southeastern Conference honors in 2011, the 6-foot-3, 208-pound Rogers amassed 67 catches for 1,040 yards and nine touchdowns. He has averaged 15.5 yards per reception and scored 11 touchdowns on 78 career receptions.

Multiple sources told that Rogers was suspended in the offseason, something that Dooley refused to address Sunday in his pre-spring press conference.

"I'm not going to go into all the individuals. We had a lot of guys who missed a workout or two whether it be for academic reasons, whether it's discipline or injury," Dooley said. "We had a ton of that. It's managing a hundred guys. Everyday's a challenge and I don't want to revisit our last eight weeks."

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