Texas Coach Strong means business as his players have already learned

Courtesy Texas Sports

Texas coach Charlie Strong confirmed this week that he has
dismissed five players and suspended three more indefinitely.

 

Strong announced the dismissal of running backs Joe Bergeron
and Jalen Overstreet and defensive back Chevoski Collins in his first public
comments since July reports that the trio had been kicked off the team. All
three players have been granted a release to transfer.

 

Strong also said running back/receiver Daje Johnson,
offensive tackle Desmond Harrison and safety Josh Turner will be suspended for
at least the first game of the season.

All three players will practice with the
team when the Longhorns begin fall camp Monday, and Strong has not decided how
many games they will miss. Each was suspended for the same undisclosed
violation.

 

“We have core values within this program. We expect our
players to abide by those values,” Strong said. “You take away
something that's important to them — and football is really important to a lot
of these players — and you make sure that with the games taken away from them,
they understand how important it is to represent this great university not only
on the field but off.

 

“With the core values, I say it all the time — if a
young man doesn't want to be part of this program, just go break a core value
of this program. You'll be telling me a lot about where you want to
stand.”

 

Harrison, Johnson and Turner were all likely to start for
Texas this season. Johnson is one of the Longhorns' top playmakers, a junior
who has accounted for 1,330 all-purpose yards and five touchdowns in his
career.

 

Harrison, a senior, was the starting left tackle in spring
practices and Turner, also a senior, has started five games and played in 32
more.

 

Strong also confirmed receivers Kendall Sanders and Montrel
Meander, arrested last month on sexual assault charges, have been removed from
the program and can't rejoin the team.

 

Strong has now officially dismissed seven players from his
program since taking over in January. Backups Chet Moss and Leroy Scott were
kicked off the team in March. Strong called Bergeron, Overstreet and Collins
“repeat offenders” who broke team rules “constantly, over and
over and over.”

 

“We have 85 guys on scholarship,” Strong said.
“If you look at it and 80 of them are doing it the right way, why can't
the rest of them?”

 

Strong laid out his five core values — honesty, treating
women with respect and no drugs, stealing or guns — in his first meeting with
his new players in January and said he had no intention of running players off
the team.

 

“We're not in the business of kicking young men
out,” he said. “The streets have a lot of people out there not doing
anything with their lives. When you have a young man with potential and has
everything given to them, then there's no reason for them to not be successful.
We want to make sure that happens in this program.”

 

Texas will be missing one more veteran player when it opens
camp Monday. Senior linebacker Kendall Thompson, who dealt with concussions
throughout his career, is taking a medical scholarship and has ended his
playing career.