There have been better days in UNT football history. There’s no other way to look at it.
Linebacker Sed Ellis and tight end Chris Loving were both arrested and charged with Class B misdemeanor theft in conjunction with an incident involving two televisions at Walmart.
Loving has never really panned out the way UNT hoped he might after signing with the Mean Green out of Blinn, mostly due to injury.
Ellis is a different story. During spring practice, it looked like he might end up being a key cog in what will be a largely rebuilt front seven on UNT’s defense. The Mean Green lost five guys who started in its win over UNLV in the Heart of Dallas Bowl. Throw in Brandon McCoy, who came off the bench in that bowl game so that Daryl Mason could start and the number jumps to six of seven.
The only full-time starter back up front is linebacker Derek Akunne.
UNT has some good linebacker prospects who could move into the lineup, including Jamal Marshall. Having options and depth never hurts, though.
But before we write off either Ellis or Loving, it’s important to remember that everyone is innocent until proven guilty. The problem is the arrest affidavit said that both admitted to the thefts and turned the televisions over to police.
I will have the full details in the paper and on our website shortly.
It appears as if the question now becomes where UNT goes from here. There is some precedent with key defensive lineman Richard Abbe from last summer. Abbe got into some trouble, dealt with the fallout and came back to have a terrific senior season.
Can Ellis and Loving follow a similar path?
There is no telling. One factor that helped Abbe is that he was an older guy when he ran into trouble and had a close friend in Cody January, who was there for him and helped him through a time when he was suspended from the team.
UNT coach Dan McCarney did not return a message seeking comment, so we don’t know for sure what he will decide to do. This could be a situation where UNT announces the issue will be handled internally, both guys could be suspended or just flat dismissed.
We will just have to wait and see what UNT does and how both guys handle it.