There is good news for Ohio State running back Carlos Hyde and quite possibly for the Buckeyes as a whole: Hyde will not be charged in connection to a reported assault earlier this month at a Columbus bar.
Hyde was named a "person of interest" in a police report after an incident early on the morning of July 20. The 19-year-old woman who was the alleged victim in an assault has declined to press charges. There had been conflicting reports on whether Hyde had struck the woman, even from witnesses who had seen videotape of the incident in the question.
Columbus police said on Tuesday that the investigation is officially closed.
Hyde, who had 970 rushing yards and 16 touchdowns in 10 games last year, was suspended from all team activities last Monday by coach Urban Meyer. That suspension, according to a school release, was pending the outcome of the student code of conduct and criminal investigations.
Now that he has been cleared of any criminal charges, Hyde has a path to return to the team. But it remains to be seen whether Meyer -- who has made no violence against women one of his core values for the program -- will issue any sort of additional punishment, such as suspending the running back for a game or two.
The best precedent is probably Storm Klein, a senior linebacker who was suspended from the team last summer after being charged with domestic violence. That charge was reduced before the start of the season and Klein was reinstated to the team, but he still served a two-game suspension. However, Klein also pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct, while Hyde will not even be charged. That could bode well for an earlier return.