Miami Dismisses Two Key Linebackers

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

When the Miami Hurricanes stroll into Papa John's Cardinal Stadium on Sept. 1 to open their 2014 season, they will do so without a pair of linebackers who were expected to play key roles this season.

Al Golden dismissed rising sophomores Alex Figueroa and JaWand Blue on Tuesday after both were arrested on charges of sexual battery over the holiday weekend. Figueroa was expected to be the starting strong-side linebacker for for the Canes, while Blue was expected to be a key backup.

According to the arrest report,  the dismissal stems from an incident in which the two men engaged in sexual acts with a "physically helpless" 17-year-old girl who is also a student at Miami.

A police report said in the early morning hours of July 5, Blue and Figueroa brought the intoxicated victim, a UM student, to a dorm room at the school's Pearson Hall building. The report said Blue and Figueroa then had oral, vaginal and anal sex with the victim, who was "physically helpless to resist."

The victim reported the crime to the campus police. Coral Gables Police investigated and made arrests. Both were transported to Turner Guilford Knight Correctional Center in Miami.

Tuesday, Blue and Figueroa admitted to buying several alcoholic drinks for the victim and bringing her back to Figueroa's room on campus, then performing sexual acts without her consent.

Figueroa started two games at middle linebacker for the Hurricanes as a redshirt freshman in 2013, and totaled 17 tackles and a sack. Blue, a former highly-touted recruit, appeared in two games and notched one tackle.

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