Let's get this out of the way, no, this is not an April Fool's post.
Nolan Weidner is reporting that "troubled" Syracuse linebacker Brice Hawkes is no longer on the official roster.
Marrone had suspended Hawkes, 19, twice in the past three months -- once before the Pinstripe Bowl in December and again at the start of spring practice. In fact, Hawkes had just returned to the field this week because Marrone extended his suspension, saying he "wasn't ready" to rejoin the team.
As is his custom, Marrone declined to specify why Hawkes was dismissed. He did say that the player from Pembroke Pines, Fla., did not leave the team on his own.
Unfortunately, it's not terribly surprising. If I asked you to pick one guy you thought would get booted from the team before the season started, there's a good chance you would have said Hawkes.
And so, the Weakside Linebacker Curse continues (You know how much I love my curses...).
Maturity seemed to be Brice's downfall. His Twitterfeed was often a bit too fast and loose. His fashion choices were also a little suspect for being a high-profile person. And whatever it was he did to get himself booted from the team, the fact that it came to that after two separate suspensions says it all, really.
Shame, as he seemed to be developing into a quality player (not to mention he was pegged to start this year). Fare thee well, Brice. Hampton is waiting for your call.
The silver lining in all of this is that standout freshman Dyshawn Davis is more than happy to step in and secure that WLB spot (assuming the curse doesn't get him too). Davis was already putting in enough good work to possibly steal the spot without Hawkes' dismissal. Now it looks like it's between Davis and sophomore Mario Tull for the starting gig.
So if you're keeping track, and not counting injuries, the program is down two players (Beckett Wales and now Brice). Compared to the last couple years, we're still ahead of the curve.