Valdosta Daily Times

Local Sports

November 29, 2012

Lewis suspended by NCAA for hit on West Alabama kicker

VALDOSTA — When the Valdosta State Blazers take the field Saturday against the Carson-Newman Eagles in the NCAA Division II quarterfinals, they will be without one of their key weapons.

The NCAA announced Wednesday that junior wide receiver Regginald Lewis has been suspended for this week’s playoff game after he targeted West Alabama kicker Ryne Smith on a first quarter kickoff during last week’s 49-21 playoff win over the Tigers.

“Valdosta State certainly does not condone flagrant actions from any of our student-athletes that are outside the rules and accepted play of their specific sport,” Valdosta State athletic director Herb Reinhard said in a university release. “In regards to the hit on the West Alabama kicker, I am completely confident that Coach (David) Dean and his staff did not ‘coach’ the hit and that Regginald Lewis’ action was due to over-zealous play and his letting his on-field emotion get the best of him. Regginald has a reputation as one who plays completely within the rules of the game and I’m confident that his action was an isolated incident.”

Head coach David Dean was also issued a public reprimand for Lewis’ actions in the game, according to the NCAA’s official release.

“Neither I nor any member of the VSU coaching staff teaches or coaches the technique of flagrant fouls or intent to personally injure any player,” Valdosta State head coach David Dean said in a release. “I have spoken with Regginald, he understands his mistake and has been very understanding of his punishment. I am convinced it was an isolated incident brought on by the emotions of a rivalry game. Regginald has always been a very emotional player that plays extremely hard, but always within the rules of the game. He realizes that this was not a technique that is coached by our staff, was not the intent of his blocking responsibility during the return and was a block on a defenseless player. After speaking with Regginald, he is very remorseful and sorry for his actions, and realizes the mistake that was made.”

Lewis was flagged for a personal foul on the play, costing the Blazers 15 yards in field position. The penalty was one of many thrown on both teams throughout the first quarter of the second round playoff game.

“In the postgame press conference, I alluded to this being embarrassing and not a part of college football, and apologized to all that witnessed the play. It is certainly not an action that we condone nor expect,” Dean said. “As (Regginald’s) coach, I take full responsibility for his actions, will suffer the consequences for his actions and will handle the disciplinary action that is deserved.”

According to the NCAA release on Wednesday, Valdosta State appealed the decision to the NCAA Division II Championships Appeals Subcommittee, which reviewed the facts and upheld the original ruling.

“The football committee was extremely disappointed with the unsportsmanlike action taken by the student-athlete,” said Frank Condino, chair of the Division II Football Committee and director of athletics at Indiana University of Pennsylvania. “Head coaches and student-athletes sign a code of conduct before each round of the championship that clearly defines the expectations of sportsmanship to be displayed. Mr. Lewis’ on the field action violated this agreement and has no place in Division II football. It also served as a discredit to the championship. It is the head coach’s responsibility to keep his student-athletes accountable to this sportsmanship agreement.”

Lewis is second on the team in receptions this season with 50, while he is third in receiving yards (653) and receiving touchdowns (4) in 11 games this season. Redshirt freshman Chris Anderson will likely fill in for Lewis this week, while junior Quin Roberson will likely see more passes thrown his way.

Saturday’s game between the Blazers and the Eagles is set for a noon kickoff from Bazemore-Hyder Stadium in Valdosta. The winner will advance to the national semifinals to face the winner of the Minnesota State-Mankato versus Missouri Western State matchup.

Text Only
Local Sports
  • Nolin settling in as new VSU soccer coach

    Meet Rebecca Nolin, VSU's new soccer coach.

    July 28, 2014

  • Induction Crowd: Honorees were genuine, down to earth

    More than 48,000 people gathered under the scorching sun at The Clark Sports Center for the 75th National Baseball Hall of Fame Induction Sunday, including one woman who carpooled to the event with more than 40 other people.

    July 28, 2014

  • Braves trio all business at inductions

    The Braves seemed almost businesslike in their approach -- something you might expect from a trio that won so consistently.
    Managers Joe Torre and Tony La Russa also remained calm and collected throughout their addresses.
    Frank Thomas took care of the emotional side, his voice breaking and his eyes moist during a heartfelt speech Sunday at the Clark Sports Center.

    July 28, 2014

  • Cooperstown Merchants: Weekend was a success

    Cooperstown merchants are elated about the exceptionally prosperous Hall of Fame Induction Weekend, several storekeepers said Sunday.

    During an afternoon lull in business, when the National Baseball Hall of Fame's induction ceremony was taking place, area shop and restaurant owners took a quick breath, reflected and expressed satisfaction with their sales for the weekend.

    July 28, 2014

  • Hall of Famers thank fathers for stepping up to the plate

    Great ballplayers thanking their dads at a Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony is about as original as oil and vinegar are to an Italian restaurant.

    July 28, 2014

  • Hall_Maddux.jpg Hall of Braves

    The weird part was that Jeff Idelson didn't take a lot of time to answer.
    "Is there any word or description that unifies this class?" was the query posed to the National Baseball Hall of Fame's president.
    "The common thread among the six is profound humility," Idelson said of former managers Joe Torre, Bobby Cox and Tony La Russa, and former players Frank Thomas, Greg Maddux and Tom Glavine, all of whom will be inducted into the Hall today. "I don't think I realized that fully until I spent time with them in December. It was uncanny to me, for the cumulative star power in that group, the humility among them. I think that's felt really strongly with baseball fans."

    July 27, 2014 2 Photos 1 Story

  • Hall_Cox.jpg Cox’s willingness to defend players stands out to local coaches

    Bobby Cox will be able to add Hall of Famer to his resume when he is inducted into the National Baseball Hall of Fame today in Cooperstown, N.Y.
    But the former Atlanta Braves manager’s legacy will remain the same to area baseball coaches: his willingness to defend his players.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

  • Valwood_Henderson.jpg Area teams hoping to get over the hump

    Past successes lead to present and future expectations.
    That’s the task faced by pretty much all 12 area high school football coaches present Saturday at In The Game Magazine’s South Georgia Football media day at the Holiday Inn conference center.
    It’s a task that also has the elite group searching for answers as to how to get past the state championship road block in recent years, aside from Valwood’s GISA Class AA crown in 2012.

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • VHS little cats camp 1.jpg Valdosta hosts fundamental camp for ‘Little ’Cats’

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • VHS practice1.jpg Getting Back to Work

    Friday officially began the 2014 season for the Valdosta Wildcats and both the offense and defense came out and made statements.
    After holding spring and summer workouts, the Wildcats will practice four more times without pads before beginning full pad practice next week.

    July 26, 2014 2 Photos

Blazers Blog