Two players dismissed from football team

Senior offensive lineman Thed Watson and receiver Jackie Chambers were dismissed from the football team, coach Jim Leavitt announced Monday. Leavitt cited violation of team rules for each dismissal.

Both players were unavailable for comment, and Leavitt declined to comment further on the situation.

“I think everything that needs to be said was said in the release. That’s what the releases are for,” Leavitt said following Monday’s practice. “I also won’t comment any tomorrow (at the weekly media luncheon).”

Watson, a St. Petersburg native and an Outland Trophy candidate for best interior lineman, had started the past seven games at left tackle after losing the starting job to Jared Carnes for the first two games.

Chambers was part of the trio of players – including running back Ricky Ponton and defensive end Josh Julmiste – who were suspended six games for violation of team rules before the season began. Chambers then returned to play sparingly on offense (three catches for 28 yards) and on special teams returning punts (one return for 1 yard).

In January, Chambers was involved in an on-campus incident with a non-USF affiliate, 27-year-old Cedel Thomassin. Chambers and Thomassin, according to a University Police report, were charged with the misdemeanor offense of affray for their involvement in a fight. Charges were later dropped by the State Attorney’s Office.

In 2005, Chambers, a junior from Miami, was third on the team in receiving with 21 catches for 290 yards, and he returned 32 punts for 370 yards.