KNOXVILLE - The Tennessee football team's arrest record stayed clean for nearly five months, but that changed this weekend with the beginning of fall camp barely a week away.
Senior linebacker Austin Johnson was arrested Sunday morning for public intoxication and disorderly conduct to become the first Vol to run into trouble with the law since safety Brent Brewer was arrested on a misdemeanor domestic assault charge in February.
The Knox County Detention Facility said Johnson was released early Sunday afternoon after his bail was set.
"We're aware of an incident, and we are investigating it," said Jimmy Stanton, UT's associate athletic director for communications.
Johnson was listed as a starter at weakside linebacker in UT's media guide. The linebacker position is one of the Vols' biggest concerns entering the start of fall camp on Aug. 1, with Herman Lathers, UT's leading returning tackler, sidelined indefinitely with a fractured ankle he suffered in early June.
A 6-foot-2, 240-pounder from Hickory, N.C., Johnson has played in 31 games during his UT career. He played in every game for the Vols last season after playing at fullback as a freshman and a sophomore. As a backup to Nick Reveiz at middle linebacker, Johnson made 44 stops last season.
Johnson made the Academic All-Southeastern Conference teams each of the past two seasons and made the league's Academic Honor Roll as a freshman. He was one of just a dozen seniors on the Vols' roster.
Brewer was suspended indefinitely following his arrest, although he was reinstated prior to the start of spring practice after a five-week absence. UT coach Derek Dooley's policy for domestic charges is an indefinite suspension pending the conclusion of an investigation.
Johnson's punishment isn't yet known. His court date is scheduled for Aug. 4, the Vols' third day of preseason practice.
More coverage and details online, in Monday's Times Free Press and on Twitter.
Patrick Brown has been the University of Tennessee beat writer since January 2011. A native of Memphis, Brown graduated from UT in May of 2010 with a bachelor’s degree in Journalism/Electronic Media and worked at the Knoxville News Sentinel for two years on the sports editorial staff and as a freelance contributor. If it’s the NBA, the NFL or SEC football and basketball, he’s probably reading about it or watching it on TV. Contact him ...
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