- The Washington Times - Saturday, January 7, 2006

RICHMOND — Virginia Tech yesterday kicked embattled quarterback Marcus Vick off the football team, citing the cumulative effects of numerous legal transgressions and his unsportsmanlike conduct in the Jan. 2 Gator Bowl.

The announcement from university president Charles Steger was delivered to Vick and his mother by Hokies coach Frank Beamer at their home in Hampton Roads, the school said, ending what has been a turbulent 2 years for the 21-year-old Vick.

Vick told the Virginian-Pilot of Norfolk he would turn professional. A family friend told the Daily News of Newport News that Vick would announce his intentions to turn pro today.

“It’s not a big deal,” Vick told the Virginian-Pilot when spotted at a Virginia Beach restaurant. “I’ll just move on to the next level, baby.”

Vick, the younger brother of Atlanta Falcons quarterback Michael Vick, was suspended from school in 2004 for several legal problems. The junior came under new and intense scrutiny this week after replays showed he stomped on the left calf of Louisville All-American defensive end Elvis Dumervil during the Jan. 2 bowl game.

No penalty was called on the play, and Vick claimed it was accidental. He further hurt his cause by claiming to have apologized to Dumervil, the NCAA sacks leader, but the Louisville player said no such apology was offered.

Yesterday, it was revealed Vick had been stopped for speeding and driving with a revoked or suspended license in Hampton on Dec. 17, Cpl. James West said. Vick’s license had been taken away in August 2004 when he was cited for reckless driving and marijuana possession in New Kent County.

Steger suspended Vick from school at that time and warned that any additional problems effectively would end his time as a member of the Hokies’ football team.

“The university provided one last opportunity for Vick to become a citizen of the university and re-admitted him in January 2005 with the proviso that any future problems would result in automatic dismissal from the team,” Steger said.

Beamer said that he was disappointed with the outcome.

“We wanted what’s best for this football team and Marcus,” he said. “I certainly wish him the best.”

School officials said that there would be no further comment until a press conference today. Beamer, Steger and athletic director Jim Weaver, who said the stomping embarrassed the university, were expected to attend.

A telephone message left on Vick’s cell phone was not returned immediately, and his mother, Brenda Boddie, has an unlisted phone number.

Vick said before the Hokies’ 35-24 comeback victory in the Gator Bowl that he planned to return for his senior season. Now, his choices are to declare for the NFL Draft by the Jan. 15 deadline or to transfer to a Division I-AA school so he can play next season.

Vick entered this season knowing he would face hostility from opposing fans, mostly stemming from his drug arrest and another for serving alcohol to underage girls during the 2003 school year.

He said he was ready for it but reacted to chants of “rapist” and “child molester” at West Virginia on Oct. 1 by making an obscene gesture in the direction of the crowd. He met with Beamer following that incident and apologized to the team.

In the ACC championship game against Florida State, he drew an unsportsmanlike conduct flag for spiking the ball after a touchdown run with the Hokies trailing. Following the 27-22 loss, he walked by reporters after the game without commenting, saying he didn’t have to.

He finished that game 26-for-52 for 335 yards with one interception and a fumble near his goal line that teammate Duane Brown recovered. Vick threw one scoring pass and ran for two more touchdowns but also was sacked six times for minus-35 yards.

On the field, he often was dazzling but sometimes tried to do too much.

The Hokies started 8-0 and were No. 3 in the polls when they played host to Miami on Nov. 5. But Vick threw two interceptions and fumbled the ball away four times in a 27-7 loss.

This season, he was runner-up to Wake Forest’s Chris Barclay as the conference’s offensive player of the year and was voted the first team quarterback on the all-conference team.

In 24 career games, the last 13 starts, Vick was 207-for-346 for 2,868 yards, 19 touchdowns and 15 interceptions. He also rushed 184 times for 492 yards and six touchdowns.

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