Police: Idaho player assaulted Cougs' Simmons

PULLMAN POLICE believe a University of Idaho football player knocked Washington State wide receiver Mansell Simmons unconscious in an altercation early Sunday morning.

Commander Chris Tennant said police also are investigating possible links to players involving a knife, handgun and a "basically totaled" automobile at the scene of the alleged incident. No one was stabbed and there were no reports of a gun being displayed, Tennant said.

Tennant said Mansel Simmons was taken to Pullman Regional Hospital, then transported to a Spokane hospital after reportedly receiving a skull fracture and concussion. Washington State does not release information about football injuries or matters deemed internal to the team.

Tennant said WSU and Idaho football players were kicked out of a party after they began arguing. "About 20" players gathered across the street in a church parking lot, where the alleged assault took place.

"We're pretty sure we know who the University of Idaho player is who hit Mr. Simmons," Tennant said.

The car vandalized in the parking lot belongs to the girlfriend of an Idaho player who had her permission to drive the car to the party, Tennant said. The damage to the car was discovered when Idaho players returned to the scene "a couple hours" after the alleged fight, Tennant said. The car had to be towed after "a door was basically ripped off its hinges," mirrors were torn off and the body of the car was dented, Tennant said.

A Washington State player had originally been identified as the possible suspect in the assault on Simmons, Tennant said, but police interviewed him and determined that he was not involved. Tennant said the WSU and Idaho football coaching staffs have been "terrific" in cooperating with police. He said other "people are not necessarily saying the truth."

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