The charges against West Virginia running back Wendell Smallwood were dropped Tuesday after he reportedly cooperated with the Department of Justice.
Zakee Lloyd, an alleged friend of Smallwood, pleaded guilty to one count of second degree murder. Smallwood had been accused of trying to intimidate a witness in the case. Charges had been pending after Smallwood was arrested July 15 and extradited from Morgantown to Delaware.
Smallwood returned to Morgantown on bond. A WVU official said Smallwood was in camp on Thursday and will be practicing with the Mountaineers.
Smallwood is projected to be one of the top three running backs for Coach Dana Holgorsen’s squad in 2014.
Last season Smallwood had 221 rushing yards his freshman season in 2013, third best on the team, and also caught 11 passes for 132 yards. He also was used to return kickoffs, and in that capacity Smallwood returned 30 kicks for a team-high 541 yards.
…. At least four basketball players from the Cardinal Conference have Division One scholarship offers.
Two are from Mingo Central. Dikembe and Montrell Dixson, who transferred to MCHS last year, both have offers.
After attending camps and hitting the AAU circuit, the two cousins have opened eyes of several coaches. Reportedly Marshall University is interested in both of the Dixsons. WVU had also reportedly shown interest in Dikembe, who will be a senior. Montrell, who will be a junior, got several offers this summer.
Meanwhile,Poca High School’s Elijah Cuffee and Luke Frampton, both sophomores, have offers from Marshall. They have also performed well on the AAU and summer camp circuit. WVU has shown interest in Cuffee.
South Charleston’s Brandon Knapper and Wheeling Central’s Chase Harler have gotten interest from WVU and Marshall, along with Virginia and North Carolina State.
The competition in the AA league should be worth the ticket price this season.
… Marshall’s Rakeem Cato has added more preseason recognition to his football resume, as the Thundering Herd star is among 27 senior quarterbacks named to the 2014 Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award Watch List.
Cato is also considered as a legit candidate for the Heisman Trophy. Over the past few years, the Herd has had Randy Moss, Chad Pennington and Byron Leftwich in the Heisman hunt. Moss and Pennington were both finalists.
… Former UK guard James Young says he is “good to go” after a concussion that kept the Boston Celtics’ first-round draft pick from playing in the NBA’s summer league.
Young sustained the concussion and whiplash in a car accident before last month’s NBA draft. The Celtics chose the 6-foot-6 swingman 17th overall with its second first-round pick. Boston selected Oklahoma State guard Marcus Smart sixth overall with their first pick.
(Kyle Lovern is the Sports Editor for the Williamson Daily News. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 304-235-4242, ext. 33 or on Twitter @KyleLovern.)