Jason Caldwell

Wide Receiver Duke Williams Has Been Dismissed From Auburn's Football Team

Auburn senior wide receiver Duke Williams has been dismissed from the football program Coach Gus Malzahn announced on Monday.

Auburn, Ala.--Entering his senior season with high expectations following a big first year with the Auburn Tigers, senior wide receiver Duke Williams  is done on the Plains as a football player after just five games in 2015.

On Monday night Coach Gus Malzahn announced that the talented receiver is no longer a part of the program.

“When individuals fail to meet the expectations of our program, there has to be consequences,” Malzahn said. “I gave D’haquille the chance to prove himself. I am disappointed that it did not work out.”

With a team struggling to get the ball down the field in the passing game, Williams struggled to be a major part of the Auburn offense this season with just 12 receptions for 147 yards and one touchdown.

Those numbers are a far cry from what Williams did a season ago after transferring in from Mississippi Gulf Coast Community College.

Playing in 10 games a year ago before missing the bowl game against Wisconsin because of a suspension, Williams caught 45 passes for 730 yards and five touchdowns to lead the team in all three categories.

Williams was suspended from the team during preseason practice in August, but was allowed to return prior to the season opener vs. Louisville. At the time of his return, Malzahn said, “He did take care of his business off the field what I had him doing. He is in the process of every day earning his teammates’ and coaches’ respect.

“He is going to have the same standards as everybody else and earns everything he gets, just like any other player would,” said Malzahn, who noted that Williams was having to start at “the bottom of the depth chart” when he returned. “He is going to have to earn his way back up--he understands that," the coach said in August.

The Tigers do not have a game this week after defeating San Jose State 35-21 last Saturday for Homecoming. The team will return to practice on Tuesday to begin preparations for a road trip to Kentucky. That contest is scheduled for a week from Thursday.

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