Five Northwestern State football players, including one starter, have been suspended for Saturday’s Southland Conference game at Abilene Christian due to violations of team rules, head coach Jay Thomas said Friday.
All of the suspensions are for the ACU game only, said Thomas, who said some of the violations are unrelated.
“We’ve had a few guys who made disappointing mistakes and there are consequences. We are all held to the same standards,” said Thomas. “These young men will be back playing next week, having paid a hard price considering all the work that goes into getting ready to perform in 11 games a season. I’m confident they are wiser for the experience.”
Starting senior receiver Tuff McClain and four freshmen are not on the trip to play ACU. The freshmen suspended include two who have started a combined nine games in the NSU secondary, safety Nick Forde (five games) and cornerback Ian Edwards (four games). Edwards was expected to start at ACU before the disciplinary measures were determined earlier this week.
Also suspended for the ACU game were two second-teamers, offensive tackle Jonathan Hubbard and tight end Luke Termin.
“These mistakes are not characteristic of the guys in our program and the young men who made them,” said Thomas. “This is just a set of poor decisions that brought us to a teachable moment not only for the five guys we have to leave home this weekend, but for everyone involved with Demon football.”
NSU kicks off at 6 p.m. Saturday against ACU, then is home to host No. 1-ranked, unbeaten Sam Houston State next Saturday night, and wraps up the season Nov. 19 at Stephen F. Austin.