USC head football coach Will Muschamp disputed the involvement of one of his players in an alleged assault at a Five Points bar Saturday.
The alleged assault happened just before 3 a.m. Saturday at the Five Points Saloon and involved Deebo Samuel, Skai Moore and Jalen Dread, according to a criminal complaint filed with the Columbia Police Department.
The three have not been charged, and Columbia police spokeswoman Jennifer Timmons would not say Tuesday whether they had been interviewed by investigators, if police had obtained surveillance footage of the incident or how the men were identified on the incident report as USC football players.
Muschamp told reporters late Tuesday afternoon that Samuel was not at the bar at the time of the alleged incident.
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“We’re still kind of gathering the facts. I’ve been out of town, so I’ve been out of pocket,” Muschamp said during a stop on the Gamecock Club’s Spurs Up Tour. “We are still gathering information. I have talked to Deebo Samuel and he was not at the establishment, so there’s an incorrect report and that’s some irresponsible journalism, in my opinion, but it is what it is.”
The 24-year-old victim is described by a family member as an Marine veteran who served in Afghanistan. He told officers he confronted the men after they knocked his phone out of his hand inside the bar.
“The subjects then became agitated, refuting the accusation,” the incident report states. “After a few seconds, the incident escalated to the subjects physically assaulting him.”
The victim was hit several times in the face and had visible swelling around his left eye, police said. The incident report said bar staff pulled the men off the victim and escorted them from the business, which is located at 812 Harden St. in the commercial district adjacent to the University of South Carolina campus.
Timmons said the victim did not request medical attention after the incident.
“The subjects were identified by the fact that they were each USC football players,” police wrote in their report. Bar staff told officers the incident was captured on video, which police were still working to obtain Tuesday. None of the men who were identified as the football players were on the scene when officers arrived.
Samuel will be a junior wide receiver next season and led the Gamecocks in catches and yards last season.
Moore, an all-SEC linebacker and the team’s best defensive player in 2014 and 2015, sat out last season with a neck injury.
Dread was a backup linebacker and left the team during the offseason.
Staff writer Josh Kendall contributed