Maurice Clarett Re-Enrolls at Ohio State
Clarett's sentence stemmed from two separate incidents in 2006. He was accused of robbing two people in an alley behind a Columbus night club, while the concealed weapons charge came after a bizarre police chase months later while he was awaiting trial for the robbery. It was a sad but predictable end to a story of too much, too soon.
Clarett starred during the Buckeyes national championship run in 2002, his freshman season. During the ensuing offseason, he was accused of academic misconduct and charged with filing a false police report. The Buckeyes announced he would be suspended for the entire 2003 season.
Clarett opted to go pro but hadn't been out of high school for three years, which made him ineligible for the 2004 NFL Draft. He sued the league in federal court and won, though the league appealed the decision and prevailed. He focused instead on the 2005 draft. Despite turning in unimpressive times in the 40-yard dash, not having played football for three years, and having a number of off-the-field issues, Clarett was drafted in the third round by the Denver Broncos.
His NFL career cannot be described, because it does not exist. Clarett was under contract for only 30 days before the Broncos waived him in late August 2005. He never played a single down in a preseason game.
Clarett then found himself without a degree or a job -- or even a signing bonus, since his contract had no guaranteed money. His fight with the NFL left him with large legal bills. He scrapped around looking for a chance in indoor football. There were rumors that he could go to NFL Europe. None of this ever came to pass.
Now that his sentence is over, Clarett is trying to get on with his life and should be commended for going back to finish his education. In a statement released Monday, Clarett said, "This is a surreal feeling to be back at Ohio State in such a supportive environment. I have looked forward to being back in school, and I'm doing my best to fit in with other students. I don't want to be a distraction or nuisance to the football team or to students on campus."
Just don't look for him in a Buckeye uniform. Though he only played one season of college football, he forfeited all his remaining eligibility when he signed with an agent.