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Trouble in Iowa

Sports blotter: "Also trouble in Washington" edition
By MATT TAIBBI  |  June 4, 2008

Calvin Schmidtke

Iowa amok
Gross, nasty, disgusting story out of Iowa recently — from Iowa City, to be exact, home of the University of Iowa, whose cool-uniformed football Hawkeyes are coached by former Bill Belichick acolyte Kirk Ferentz.

Attentive readers will recall that Iowa was in the sports-crime pages a lot this past fall, as a veritable feathered flock of current and former Hawkeyes flew into the police blotters of the Midwest. There was the story of wideouts Dominique Douglas and Anthony Bowman, two super-geniuses who used traceable IDs on university computers to steal sports merch online. Bowman subsequently was involved in another crazy incident in which he apparently stole $30.02 worth of DVDs from a Wal-Mart — then barricaded himself in his dorm room when police came for him. And there was former defensive tackle Lee Gray, who got busted for six class-C felonies for drug dealing. Running back Dana Brown — like Douglas and Bowman, a sophomore — was arrested for assaulting his girlfriend. Needless to say, Iowa was one of the most troubled major-college programs around this past year.

Now Iowa and the Hawkeyes are facing perhaps their most serious sports-crime case since the sexual-assault travails of onetime hoops star Pierre Pierce in 2002 and 2005. It seems warrants were issued for two former Hawkeye defensive backs, Cedric Everson and Abe Satterfield, who stand accused of sexually assaulting a woman on campus this past fall while she was incapacitated. The incident took place on October 14, 2007, in a dorm called Hillcrest Hall. It’s unclear exactly what took place, but according to the police complaint, the woman “was not even aware the defendant was having sexual intercourse with her.” Police also say that the DNA of sperm found in the victim “matched the known DNA profile of [Everson].”

A lengthy investigation concluded with Everson’s surrender this past week; Satterfield, as of this writing, has not yet turned himself in. Both players were kicked off the Iowa team this past year and are now playing at smaller schools — Everson at Alcorn State and Satterfield at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. A lot of these drunken dorm-room sexual-assault cases seem to go away with minimal jail time, but in Iowa it’s a different story — the second-degree sexual-abuse felony that both of these men are charged with carries a mandatory sentence of 70 percent of the maximum, which in Iowa happens to be 25 years. (Satterfield is also being sought on an additional third-degree sexual-abuse charge, which carries a maximum of 10 years and a $10,000 fine.) That means that, if found guilty, both players are facing at least 17 years — real years — in jail. Because of the seriousness of the crimes alleged here, we’ll give this pair a provisional 90 points, putting them at the top of the list. We’ll keep you posted as formal charges are filed and their trial moves forward, so stay tuned for updates from the Hawkeye State.

Career cut short
We may never know what kind of sports-crime potential Calvin Schmidtke might have fulfilled, now that he has been disinvited to follow in the footsteps of Drew Bledsoe. The top QB prospect from Lakes High in Tacoma, Washington, was set to take over at Bledsoe’s alma mater, Washington State, but now has been cast away after the latest of an astonishing string of arrests and citations.

According to news reports, Schmidtke has received 11 (!!!) citations during the past 18 months, seven of them for moving violations, but some involving controlled substances. Schmidtke was one of the top QB prospects in the country, passing for 37 touchdowns and more than 2700 yards in 2007. He’ll certainly end up somewhere, but as history tells us, these types of arrest-prone prodigies usually don’t make it. The famous University of Miami linebacker recruit Willie Williams, hailed in his high-school years as the next Ray Lewis (in more ways than one), ended up flaming out in college, perhaps exhausted by the double-digit arrests he’d incurred prior to ever playing a college down. We’ll keep an eye on Schmidtke, and see if he ends up a star in the MAC or Conference USA — or skateboarding on meth next to Todd Marinovich.

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  Topics: Sports , Big Ten Conference , Iowa Hawkeyes , Calvin Schmidtke ,  More more >
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