Updated: Monday, June 17 at 11 a.m.
The quiet and incident-free offseason in Gainesville, FL is no more as Florida Gators sophomore linebacker Antonio Morrison was arrested early Sunday morning for first-degree misdemeanor simple battery after allegedly striking a bouncer.
According to Gainesville Police, Morrison and a group of men visited Kava Lounge at 1007 W. University Ave. and inquired about the cost of entering establishment. The bouncer at the front door told him the price and explained he would not be receiving a discount, information that caused Morrison to become enraged.
“Don’t you know who I am? I am a UF football player! I am Antonio!” he responded, according to the official police report.
When Morrison was again told he would have to pay full price, he allegedly threw a “closed fist” and connected “on top of the left side of [the victim’s] head” before leaving the scene.
Morrison was positively identified and had his identity confirmed at the scene by a witness.
After being read his Miranda rights at his on-campus dorm, he admitted to being at Kava Lounge and getting into a “scuffle” with the victim though he contended that it was not a “big deal.” Morrison, 19, also admitted to being intoxicated at the time of the incident and therefore did not remember much of what transpired.
He was booked at 6:03 a.m. into Alachua County jail, where he remains in custody.
A four-star rated prospect in 2012, Morrison appeared in all 13 games for Florida as a true freshman, starting three contests. The early enrollee out of Bolingbrook, IL finished with 34 tackles (2.0 for loss), a sack and a forced fumble, receiving SEC All-Freshman team honors at the season’s end.
His most notable play of the year came when he appeared to knock out and force a fumble from Florida State quarterback E.J. Manuel during a rivalry game on Nov. 24.
Morrison was listed as the starting middle linebacker on the Gators’ post-spring practice depth chart released by head coach Will Muschamp on April 24 and is expected to be a dynamic contributor to Florida’s defense in 2013.
“Coach Muschamp is aware of the situation and handling the matter,” said senior associate athletics director and team spokesman Steve McClain in an official statement released to the media.
Update – June 17 at 11 a.m.: According to the Orlando Sentinel, Morrison will be released without bond at approximately 1 p.m. on Monday. Attorney Huntley Johnson, who represents most Florida student-athletes, told the paper that it could take anywhere from two weeks to two months for Morrison’s case to be resolved.