Old Dominion linebackers Caleb Taylor and Larry Alston were suspended indefinitely for unspecified violations of team rules, coach Bobby Wilder announced prior to Saturday’s game versus Albany.
Taylor, a redshirt sophomore from Phoebus High who transferred from Virginia, had lost his starting job, but played in the first three games. He missed last week’s game versus The Citadel with a shoulder injury.
Alston, a redshirt freshman from Aberdeen, N.J., played the first four games and started the past two. He totaled eight tackles, while Taylor had 11 through his first three games.
“Our goal as a football program is that Caleb and Larry will learn from their mistakes and be better people, students and football players from their suspensions,” Wilder said in a statement released through the athletic department. “The fact that both have been starters on defense will force other players into significant roles tonight.”
Taylor had lost his starting middle linebacker job to Richie Staton, a true freshman from Phoebus. He was replaced by junior D.J. Simon on the depth chart. Malique Johnson, a sophomore, started at rover in place of Alston.
Taylor and Alston were the second and third players to face disciplinary action this week. ODU dismissed running back Tyree Lee from the program on Tuesday. The Monarchs’ leading rusher from 2012 was suspended for the season last summer, but practiced and participated in all other team activities, with an eye toward returning to the field in 2014.
Taylor played all 13 games last season and started the final nine. He was second on the team in tackles, with 87, and tied for the lead in tackles-for-loss (13.5). In high school, he played on three state championship teams and was considered a top-50 linebacker prospect. He redshirted as a freshman at U.Va. before transferring.
Alston was a second-team all-state selection, across all classifications, at Matawan High in New Jersey.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun