Pocatello, ID (Sports Network) - Idaho State's troubled season turned more
bizarre on Thursday with the university announcing the suspension of senior
wide receiver Derek Graves for an undisclosed violation of team rules.
Graves told ESPN.com that head coach Mick Kramer informed him of the
indefinite suspension in a letter, citing he had been repeatedly late for
The Big Sky university had suspended Kramer for last Saturday's game at
Montana. ESPN's "Outside the Lines" program recently aired video footage of
Kramer apparently shoving Graves to the ground on Oct. 3 - an incident which
led Graves to file a police report and hire an attorney.
Graves said he suffered from neck spasms after the incident and hasn't played
Idaho State also issued a letter of reprimand to Kramer for a violation of its
conduct policy before the Bengals went on to lose to Montana, 70-24.
The Pocatello City Attorney's Office is considering misdemeanor charges
"I'm assuming this is a personal vendetta by Coach Kramer. He's acting
differently toward me since the incident," Graves told ESPN.com.
Idaho State is 1-7 and has beaten only Division II Black Hills State. It has
surrendered an average of 61 points in its seven losses to Division I teams.
Kramer is a longtime Big Sky coach who has had successful yet controversial
stints at Eastern Washington and Montana State. In 1995, an Eastern Washington
player accused Kramer of slapping him, although no charges were brought
against the coach.
Kramer was fired at Montana State in 2007 after five former players were
arrested within a year's time, the final straw being a former player caught
selling drugs. Kramer filed a lawsuit against the university, claiming he was
sent packing without cause and that the school libeled and slandered him, and
later settled the case with neither side admitting fault.
The Sports Network