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Suspended Medlock Out of Sun Bowl

December 12, 2005|Lonnie White | Times Staff Writer

UCLA kicker Justin Medlock will not play in the Sun Bowl after he was suspended indefinitely by Coach Karl Dorrell for his involvement in an alcohol-related accident early Saturday morning.

"I have met with Justin and informed him of my decision," Dorrell said in a statement released Sunday. "He understands the high standards with which we expect our players to represent the program and has always met those standards.

"Justin apologized to me and wanted me to express his apologies to his teammates. He made a mistake and he understands that there are penalties when a player violates our rules."

Medlock, 22, reportedly was driving a 1998 Toyota Tacoma northbound on the San Diego Freeway and crashed into a call box at about 3 a.m. Medlock was arrested by Inglewood police on Florence Avenue after he walked 1 1/2 miles away from the accident with his passenger, Hannah Jun, left in the truck.

Jun, a member of the UCLA women's golf team who recently qualified to play on the Futures Tour, suffered spinal injuries but does not require surgery and is expected to make a full recovery, according to UCLA officials.

Medlock suffered minor injuries and was booked on suspicion of felony drunk-driving causing injury and felony hit-and-run. He was released from the sheriff's Inmate Reception Center in Los Angeles Saturday night after posting a $10,000 bond. Medlock's court date will be Jan. 3 in Inglewood.

"Justin will remain suspended until we have all of the information regarding his situation," Dorrell said about Medlock, who will not be allowed to participate in any activities with the team, including practice leading up to UCLA's game against Northwestern Dec. 30 in El Paso.

"We will also monitor the legal proceedings before making any further determination of his status," Dorrell added.

Medlock's attorney, Milton Grimes, disputed any notion that Medlock tried to escape the scene of the accident.

"He pulled his friend from the car and after being unable to locate his cellphone, he ran up the freeway ramp to the gas station on the corner of Manchester and the freeway," Grimes said.

"He tried to get help at the station, but he was bleeding and the cashier thought something else. ... Justin then left there and he flagged down the police. If he wanted to hide out, he would have hid in the bushes.

"He wasn't running away. He had a head injury and was trying to get help for his friend. He was just hoping that she wasn't dead."

Medlock was a first-team Pacific 10 Conference selection last season and second-team pick this season. Medlock had made 13 of 17 field-goal tries this year.

Without Medlock, the Bruins' kicking game for the Sun Bowl will be left up to non-scholarship freshmen Brian Malette and Jimmy Rotstein and redshirt freshman punter Aaron Perez.

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