<
>

Utah recruit charged with battering coach

A high school quarterback in Southern California said he still has a full scholarship offer from Utah despite being expelled after an altercation with his baseball coach.

Tyler Shreve, 18, of Redlands, Calif., wrestled Redlands East Valley baseball coach James Cordes to the ground in anger after being informed he was being dismissed from the team. The incident happened on school grounds on Feb. 24.

Shreve, a 6-foot-4 pitcher and starting quarterback, was expelled last Thursday and was formally charged with misdemeanor battery on a school official Friday, according to Susan Mickey, spokeswoman for the San Bernardino County District Attorney's office.

Shreve is the No. 24 quarterback recruit in the country according the ESPN's Scouts Inc. He signed with Utah in February. He's also one of the top prep baseball players in the country. Keith Law, senior baseball analyst for Scouts Inc., said Shreve could be drafted as high as the second round in June.

Utah football coach Kyle Whittingham would not comment specifically on the incident or Shreve's status with the program.

"We plan to wait until the legal process has run its course before we make a decision on Tyler," Whittingham said in a statement.

When reached by ESPN.com on Monday, Shreve said his lawyers advised him not to go into details of the situation, but he was remorseful about the events.

"When it all happened I was just going off pure emotion because something like this has never happened to me before," Shreve said. "Everything's still on track right now. Utah's been there for me. They've helped me throughout this whole thing. "[Whittingham] made some other phone calls to make sure what I told him was true and it was true. They've totally stood by me and had my back."

Shreve will be arraigned May 13 in San Bernardino, Calif., and if convicted could face a $2,000 fine and up to one year in county jail.

According to The Press-Enterprise of Riverside, the incident took place in a school conference room. Shreve, his parents, Redlands East Valley principal John Maloney and Cordes were all present. Shreve attacked Cordes after he informed the group of his decision to dismiss Shreve for not going to class and not respecting the coaching staff.

Shreve's father Tony pulled him off the coach, who was injured but not serious enough to warrant hospitalization.

San Bernardino County sherriff's deputies were called to the scene and Cordes' injuries were documented and photographed. Shreve and his father, who had already gone home, voluntarily went to the police station. No arrests were made.

Maloney declined to comment on the altercation.

In the meantime, Shreve said he's still on pace to graduate with a Redlands East Valley degree. He'll attend a community school in San Bernardino, Calif., one day a week for the next three weeks to complete his English credits, the only core class remaining for him to graduate.

Shreve also is playing travel baseball to make sure his draft status stays intact. He is playing for the ABD Academy, a club baseball program based out of San Bernardino, which is made up of some of the best amateur baseball talent in Southern California. The league has produced major league talent including Philadelphia Phillies infielder Greg Dobbs and Los Angeles Dodgers left fielder Reed Johnson.

Shreve said his goal is to be drafted in June, and if he goes as high as projected and the money is right, he said he'd skip college.

As Redlands East Valley's starting quarterback, Shreve was 33-4. He threw for 4,732 yards and 54 touchdowns. In baseball last summer, he was selected as one of 20 AFLAC All-Americans from the western region. He also participated in the Area Code Games, a showcase of the top players in the country.

"I was just distraught and my dad reassured me that everything was going to be OK," Shreve said of his mindset after the incident. "We talked to Utah, and then the scouts started calling me and telling me that they were still going to be on me and look at me. So, right now I feel pretty good about where I stand. Obviously, it wasn't as good as it was a month ago, but I do feel really bad about what happened and it's a tragedy that it all had to turn out like that."

Graham Watson covers college football for ESPN.com.