Coleman Arrested

Duane Coleman is scheduled to walk across a stage at 11 a.m., Thursday and get handed his diploma by Clemson president James Barker. However, only a few hours before, he'll meet with a judge to see what the bond is for him to get out of jail.

Coleman was arrested and charged Tuesday night with simple possession of marijuana in Oconee County. As of 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, he was being held in the Oconee County Detention Center waiting for his bond hearing, which may not happen until 9 a.m., Wednesday, a spokesperson at the center said.

The spokesperson said that the bond hearing could happen "anytime between now and 9 o'clock (Wednesday)."

Coleman was booked at the center at 6:04 p.m.

This is a big blow to Coleman, who overcame big odds to remain on the Tigers football team and earn his degree.

The first three years of his Clemson career were mixed with problems on and off the field. At one point, Tigers head coach Tommy Bowden even suspended him from the team for a period of time.

But Coleman came back and turned out to be one of the true leaders of the team and a quality person.

"The guy I like to bring up is Duane Coleman, because the first meeting I had with him and the seniors, you know when I talk to all players one-on-one, that was not on the radar screen," Bowden had said only a few hours before Coleman's arrest. "I don't think it was for him or really anyone in his family, but now I think his mom is driving up (from Florida to see him graduate).

"Here is a guy like that, who is graduating in four and half years, to me, is a pretty good story. Neither one of us anticipated him graduating. I was hoping, and we had a plan for him and we surely weren't going to discourage him, but that would be one that if you were betting four and half years ago, he is one that we all would have bet against probably."

There's no official word yet from the school as to whether Coleman will be allowed to play in the bowl game.

If he's not, then the Tigers could line up a pair of freshmen in Crezdon Butler and Chris Chancellor at cornerback.

Against South Carolina, regular cornerback C.J. Gaddis was moved to Sam linebacker, which put Butler and Chancellor splitting time at one corner opposite of Coleman.

Should Coleman be unavailable, defensive coordinator Vic Koenning will have to decide whether to move Gaddis back to corner in place of Coleman and put Maurice Nelson back at Sam, or to start the two freshmen in the secondary. Top Stories