Diversion for Mitchell

A Tennessee football player has received judicial diversion on a disorderly conduct charge. If he pays court costs and stays out of trouble for 30 days, the Class C misdemeanor will be expunged from his record. In other words, it will be as if the mishap never occurred.

Thursday morning's ruling at Knoxville's Fourth General Sessions Court means Marvin Mitchell should be back on the UT football team when preseason drills commence in August. Mitchell, a senior from Norfolk, Va., came out spring practice as the No. 1 middle linebacker and looms as a key player for the 2006 Vols. He had no legal representation during Thursday morning's hearing and had no comment afterward.

Mitchell was arrested in the wee hours of the morning on May 1 at a campus-area convenience store. Police reports say he threatened to "knock out" a fellow customer, then became resistant and verbally abusive as an officer tried to escort him from the store. Police indicated they smelled alcohol on Mitchell.

Head coach Phillip Fulmer put Mitchell on indefinite suspension immediately following the incident and dismissed redshirt freshman defensive lineman Raymond Henderson later the same day for an "inappropriate" comment to a young girl. That evening Fulmer called a team meeting during which he reportedly became so upset that he threw water bottles.

The May 1 incident was the first for Mitchell in four years with the Vols. Fulmer is on record saying the player can rejoin the team if he avoids further mishaps and completes some punishments assigned by the head coach.

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