Two Gators suspended for season opener

Updated: August 23, 2003, 4:14 PM ET

GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Florida freshmen linebackers Channing Crowder and Taurean Charles were suspended Saturday for the Gators' season opener for their involvement in off-field fights.

Crowder and Charles pleaded no contest to separate misdemeanor battery charges in June.

Crowder was accused of punching and kicking a man on the ground outside a Gainesville nightclub. Teammate Steven Harris was also accused of knocking the man unconscious, and was charged with felony battery.

Charles, a redshirt freshman from Miami, was charged with simple battery for slamming a female friend into a computer desk and against a wall before shoving her to the floor in a dorm room.

The Gators open against San Jose State on Aug. 30, and coach Ron Zook said the players would be back for the team's game at Miami on Sept. 6.

Harris, who faces an Oct. 13 trial date, hasn't been allowed to practice with the team this preseason.

This story is from's automated news wire. Wire index