COLUMBIA — Missouri freshman wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham, the consensus No. 1 incoming recruit in the nation this season, and two other freshmen on the Tigers’ football team were arrested Wednesday night on suspicion of marijuana possession. According to Capt. Brian Weimer of the University of Missouri Police Department, officers saw a vehicle in a parking lot south of Memorial Stadium shortly before midnight and noticed an odor of marijuana. Green-Beckham, receiver Levi Copelin and linebacker Torey Boozer were taken into custody and face charges for possession of 35 grams or less of marijuana. All three were released on summons. According to a statement by the MU athletic department, two other players, freshman defensive tackle Harold Brantley and freshman tight end Brandon Holifield, were also in the vehicle but not arrested. Weimer said the vehicle, a white 2004 Lincoln Navigator, was registered to Green-Beckham. Green-Beckham was suspended for Saturday’s home game against Vanderbilt. The other four players also were suspended for one game, but all are expected to take redshirt seasons.
Missouri coach Gary Pinkel did not comment on the arrests but the athletic department issued a statement. “We’re aware of the incident and have addressed it,” said Chad Moller, Missouri’s associate athletic director for communications. “All individuals involved have been immediately suspended from the program for one game. All other disciplinary measures will be handled internally, and there will be no further comment.” In cases involving possession of less than 35 grams of marijuana within the city limits of Columbia, individuals can be charged with a misdemeanor in state court, which is punishable by up to a year in prison and a $1,000 fine. But first-time offenders are often sent to city court and charged with a violation of municipal ordinance, which is not a felony and often results in a fine but no jail time. The commitment of Green-Beckham to Missouri was considered to be a Signing Day coup for the Tigers. Green-Beckham, a five-star receiver from Springfield Hillcrest High School, was rated by many scouting services as the top prospect in the Class of 2012. After making a limited impact in Missouri’s first four games, Green-Beckham hauled in his first career college touchdown Saturday, an 80-yard pass from James Franklin in the Tigers’ 21-16 win over Central Florida. For the season, Green-Beckham, who is 6 feet 6 and 220 pounds, has seven catches for 128 yards and a touchdown. On Wednesday morning during the SEC coaches’ teleconference, Pinkel spoke highly of Green-Beckham. “He’s got a good attitude, and I think he trusts us, which is the most important thing,” Pinkel said. “… I also think … that we want to get the ball to him as much as we can.”
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