It's been nearly three weeks since two University of Texas football players —linebacker Jordan Hicks and quarterback Case McCoy—were sent home from the Alamo Bowl for violating unspecified team rules. Hicks and McCoy were never arrested, and San Antonio police never identified them as suspects, but their suspension did coincide with the alleged sexual assault of a 21-year-old woman at a hotel sometime during the wee hours the night before. Multiple reports said two Texas football players were allegedly involved in the incident, and the unspoken understanding was that those players were Hicks and McCoy.
Last night, the Longhorns put out a statement saying Hicks and McCoy have been reinstated. "Obviously when you break team rules there's a certain amount of trust that has been broken, and that will be addressed with further discipline," coach Mack Brown said, per the statement. "That discipline will be handled within the team." Brown's decision comes just days after lawyers for both Hicks and McCoy said they were told by the San Antonio PD that the matter was closed and neither player would face charges. But that same day—last Wednesday—the San Antonio PD had put out its own statement saying the investigation remained open, and a police spokesman just told me in an email the case "is still being reviewed."
So what gives? Why would Brown let Hicks and McCoy come back before police announce they've finished their inquiry? One of three options: Brown knows something police won't acknowledge publicly; he's decided to let Hicks and McCoy rejoin the team pending the outcome of the investigation; or he's gambling they ultimately won't be charged with a crime.