Texas Tech has dismissed from the football team defensive back Nigel Bethel II, the highest ranked player in its 2014 recruiting class, following allegations that he punched a female basketball player in the face in an on-campus incident on Saturday.
Texas Tech issued the following statement on Sunday:
“Nigel Bethel II, a Texas Tech football student athlete, has been dismissed from the team due to his role in an incident at the Texas Tech Student Recreation Center on Saturday, June 28. Texas Tech Athletics has a zero tolerance policy on this type of behavior.”
Bethel reportedly punched a Texas Tech woman basketball player, Amber Battle, in the face during a pickup basketball game.
The Lubbock Avalanche-Journal is reporting that Battle sustained a broken bone from the hit in the face and is expected to undergo surgery. Battle, a senior on the /red Raiders’ women basketball team, averaged 16.4 points a game last season and led the team in rebounds and assists. She was an All-Big 12 Second Team selection for the 2013-14 season.
Bethel was an ESPN Top 300 prospect and the Red Raiders’ highest touted recruit in the 2014 class. He was already on campus and participating in the football program. He was expected to participate in both football and track.