EUGENE, Ore. – University of Oregon cornerback Cliff Harris has been suspended indefinitely from the Ducks’ football program following last weekend’s incident that included citations for driving at excessive speeds and driving with a suspended license, head football coach Chip Kelly announced Wednesday. Kelly added that the suspension includes Harris sitting out a minimum of Oregon’s 2011 season opener vs. LSU.
Kelly emphasized that the Fresno, Calif., native’s status following the Sept. 3 game in Arlington, Texas’ Cow-boys Stadium would be dependent on his adhering to standards set forth by the University’s football program. He added that the sanctions imposed upon Harris were based upon the information currently available surrounding more than just a single event, and were independent of any legal rulings or potential violation of NCAA rules that have yet to be determined.
“Cliff’s future clearly is in Cliff’s hands,” Kelly said. “Earning an opportunity to represent the University of Oregon and this football program certainly rests far beyond a player’s ability on the field of play. Our behavior out of the spotlight often is more important and will be held to a higher standard. Until Cliff is able to conform to the same standards all of us must comply with, his status will remain unchanged.”
The 2010 consensus All-America defensive back and punt returner led the nation with 23 passes broken up and was second in the country in punt returns with an 18.8-yard average, in addition to pacing the Pac-10 Conference with six interceptions.