O'Neal Suspended Indefinitely

Colorado senior Clint O'Neal has been suspended from the football team indefinitely and cross country runner Jackie Zeigle has left the squad, according to the CU athletic department. Both face charges stemming from e-mails sent from O'Neal's account earlier this month that were filled with racial slurs and threats of violence toward two CU cross country athletes.

Clint O'Neal will not be allowed to participate in any football team activities while he is suspended. It is not known how long his suspension will last. Until further notice, O'Neal, a starting tackle the past two seasons, will not participate in bowl practices, which are scheduled to begin Thursday, in preparation for Dec. 27 Champs Sports Bowl in Orlando.

Zeigle, a junior from Utah, quite the team and "will no longer be associated with the cross country and track programs," according to a CU athletic department release.

O'Neal and Zeigle, who are romantically linked, were charged recently with harassment, a misdemeanor that carries a minimum punishment of a $50 fine, and a maximum punishment of $750 and six months in jail, if convicted. Both are scheduled to appear in Boulder County Court on Dec. 19.

The charges stem from two e-mails sent from O'Neal's account on facebook.com, an Internet site used by college students across the country where students at different universities can post profiles and exchange e-mails. Greg Castro, a sophomore on the cross country team, received one of the e-mails on Dec. 4. Another was sent to sophomore cross country runner Stephen Pifer.

According to several published reports, which quoted a police report that detailed the e-mails, the electronic missive to Castro, who is Hispanic, contained numerous racial slurs. It also threatened that O'Neal, who is listed at 6-5, 305 pounds, would come drag Castro behind his car and "introduce (Castro) to the devil."

Pifer used to be romantically linked with Zeigle's twin sister, Laura, also a member of the cross country team. The e-mail sent from O'Neal's account to Pifer warned Pifer to stay away from both Zeigle sisters. It also contained derogator reference to Pifer's ethnicity in one line: "I am teammates with some of the lowest, like you…"

According to a story in the Colorado Daily, Zeigle took responsibility for writing the e-mails, but said that O'Neal directed her to log onto O'Neal's account and write the e-mails intended to intimidate the two fellow student-athletes.

According to the report, the e-mails were sent in the wake of a party attended by Castro, Pifer and the Zeigle sisters, where a conflict between Pifer, Castro and Laura Zeigle reportedly took place.


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