Mizzou still buzzing about Dixon departure

Mizzou still buzzing about Dixon departure

COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) Michael Dixon's abrupt departure from the Missouri men's basketball team hasn't quieted the campus conversation about his exit.

The senior guard announced his intent to transfer on Nov. 29 after two sexual assault claims became public. Dixon had been benched all season by No. 12 Missouri (7-1) and coach Frank Haith for unspecified team rule violations. He was not charged in either case.

In an interview with The Associated Press, University of Missouri Board of Curators chairman David Bradley suggested the school may need to take a closer look at its student disciplinary process. Dixon reportedly appeared before a campus student conduct board whose members include students and professors.

``I don't think it would hurt to relook at the process we go through,'' Bradley said at a curators' meeting in St. Louis. ``I'm not saying the process is wrong, but there are a lot of people who had questions about it, and a lot of people who were upset about the Dixon situation.''

Absent from the meeting due to illness was Chancellor Brady Deaton, who had Dixon not decided to leave on his own would have been able to veto, uphold or revise the student conduct committee's confidential decision. But university President Tim Wolfe, who oversees the system's four campuses, defended the integrity of the disciplinary process.

``We have a process that involves the student conduct committee that has representatives from the various constituency groups and has been successful in looking into these situations and making decisions,'' Wolfe said Friday. ``That process was used effectively in this particular situation.''

Curator Wayne Goode, a former Missouri legislator who will succeed Bradley as the governing board's chairman, said the university had to balance the privacy of both Dixon and his accusers.

``We were advised by our (legal) counsel that we had to be careful with regard to those privacy issues, and I think we were,'' he said.

With no charges against him, Dixon received a lot of support amid the allegations. After he announced he would transfer, some students remained troubled by the backlash faced by women who allege sexual assault.

``Despite the incredible resources meant to educate on this issue, the sad truth is that there is still a culture of victim blaming that permeates MU and countless other college communities across the nation,'' student government president Xavier Billingsley wrote Wednesday in an open letter to the campus community titled ``For A Safer Mizzou.''

``Rape is rape - not only when a sexual advance is forcible, but any time one party says `no,''' Billinsgley continued. ``There have been no convictions borne out of the accusations discussed this past week, but to think that any student would want to shut out serious concerns about whether an awful crime was committed for the sake of athletics is incredibly disappointing. This shows that even though we have made great strides in dealing with sexual violence and violation, we still have a long way to go. ``

Dixon was suspended for two games in December 2010 for violating unspecified team rules under former Missouri coach Mike Anderson, who is now at Arkansas.

A 25-year-old Missouri graduate and former athletics department employee told the AP that Dixon forcibly had sex with her in January 2010 during his freshman year. The woman reported the alleged assault to campus police and was examined for signs of sexual assault at a hospital, but said she declined to press charges.

The campus police report was publicly leaked to reporters last week, about the same time a second allegation was being aired publicly. In that case, a current female student accused Dixon of sexual assault, disclosing the allegation in a Twitter exchange with a former Missouri player. She also filed a city police report in August, but prosecutors decided on Nov. 16 to not file charges.


Alan Scher Zagier can be reached athttp://twitter.com/azagier

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Oklahoma star freshman Trae Young to enter NBA Draft

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Oklahoma star freshman Trae Young to enter NBA Draft

After a sensational freshman season at the University of Oklahoma, point guard Trae Young plans to enter the 2018 NBA Draft, according to a report by ESPN.

Young will be one of the most fascinating prospects in this class given the extreme highs and lows of his one college season. He vaulted into the top 10 in most mock drafts after beginning his freshman year on fire, but then began to slip over the final months as his shooting percentage dropped.


Right now the Wizards are lined up to be in the late teens, so it's unlikely he falls to their range. But at this point it's difficult to predict where he will go, whether that is top five or later in the lottery.

It really could go either way. Some teams may see him as a Steph Curry-like scorer who can hit shots from unusually deep range. There were certainly times where Young backed up those comparisons.

Teams could see his flaws as a result of opposing defenses honing in on him because they could at the college level. In the NBA he may have more space and therefore be able to play to his strengths.


Or, teams could look at the fact he shot 36.1 percent from three on a whopping 10.2 attempts per game as a sign he is a chucker. He also led the nation in turnovers, commiting 24 more than the next guy. Young averaged 5.2 giveaways per game.

While Curry is the best-case scenario, Jimmer Fredette may be the worst-case. Fredette was the 10th overall pick in 2011 and now plays in China. 

Young will be an intriguing prospect in the draft because the ceiling is high and the basement is low. 

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Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source


Redskins bring in another defensive lineman for free agency visit, per source

The Redskins hosted Sylvester Williams for a free agency visit on Tuesday morning, per a source with knowledge of the situation. 

Williams played in 2017 with the Titans, logging 20 tackles in 11 starts. Tennessee released Williams this offseason, just one year into a three-year, $16 million deal. 

Drafted in the first round by the Broncos in 2013, the 6-foot-3, 313 lbs. Williams' stat line has never really popped. That isn't uncommon for a nose tackle though, as the job is less about tackles than it is holding leverage against the interior of an offensive line. 


Should the Redskins sign 29-year-old Williams, it would represent the first true nose tackle free agency addition since Terrance "Pot Roast" Knighton joined the team in 2015 from Denver. In an ironic twist, Williams took over at nose in Denver when Knighton left for Washington, and posted his best season as a Bronco. 

Washington restructured its deal with Terrell McClain, reported first by ESPN, which could allow more flexibility to add another defensive lineman. That could come in the draft, but the club has been very active talking with free agents to play on the defensive front. 

On Monday, Johnathan Hankins and Pernell McPhee visited with Redskins officials in Ashburn. Hankins would carry the heaviest price tag, but his past performance would also indicate the most promise. 

McPhee is an edge rusher with enough bulk to play against the run as well. Williams compares more with Hankins, and could be seen as the secondary option.

Among 79 nose tackles Pro Football Focus graded, Williams ranked 36th. For comparison, Bengals star Geno Atkins ranked No. 1, Dontari Poe ranked 26th, former Redskin Chris Baker ranked 65th and current Redskin Ziggy Hood ranked 79th. 

It's also worth noting that since the Titans released Williams, should the Redskins sign the nose tackle, his contract would not count towards the NFL compensatory pick formula. 

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