Ford: Williams Won't Play

Darrell Williams will not play for Oklahoma State in future games while facing legal issues, head coach Travis Ford said Monday. The 6-foot-8 junior from Chicago pleaded not guilty Monday afternoon in Payne County district court to four sexual assault charges from an alleged incident in mid-December involving three female students.

"It goes without saying that we take the charges very seriously," Ford said in a statement released through the school's media relations department. "Darrell will not travel or play while the legal issues are addressed."

Williams entered his not guilty plea Monday afternoon and a preliminary hearing has been scheduled for March 7.

Thus, Williams will not play in the Cowboys final seven regular season games, if his legal issues are not addressed prior to the March 7 hearing. OSU is not scheduled to play again until Saturday when the Cowboys travel to Nebraska.

Williams, 21, is charges filed by the Payne County District Attorney's office of three counts of rape by instrumentation and one count of sexual battery from a Dec. 12 incident at a Stillwater residence.

The crime of rape by instrumentation is a felony that carries a penalty of one to 15 years in prison. The crime of sexual battery is a felony that carries a penalty of up to 10 years in prison.

Two other individuals, neither of whom are OSU basketball players or associated with the Cowboy basketball program, also were charged Monday. Yayi Janneh, 22, was charged with two counts of sexual battery. Zach Logan Thomason, 20, was charged with unlawful possessions of marijuana and unlawful possession of drug paraphernalia.

Williams, a transfer from Midland (Texas) College, was named the Big 12's newcomer of the week on Monday after averaging 16.5 points and 12.5 rebounds in wins over Missouri and Oklahoma.

He is averaging 7.1 points and 7.3 rebounds in 23 games for the Cowboys this season.


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