Ohio State's Bradley Roby, considered one of the top five cornerbacks in the draft and a likely first-round pick, pleaded guilty Tuesday in Columbus, Ohio, to physical control of a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
Roby, 21, was sentenced to 180 days in jail, but that sentence was suspended on the condition that he take a three-day driver-intervention program, the Columbus Dispatch reported. Roby's attorney said his client planned to start the program Thursday. Roby also was fined $375 plus court costs for the April 20 incident.
Roby's agent, Michael Perrett of Sports Trusts Advisors, released a statement Tuesday morning on the matter: "Though my client, Bradley Roby, maintains his innocence and feels he would have been completely exonerated had he taken this matter to trial, Bradley has accepted the prosecutor's offer of a reduced charge to 'physical control' to bring some closure and finality to this situation ahead of next week's NFL draft. A 'physical control' citation is a non-moving violation that will not result in any points being added to his driving record and there will be no license suspension. Bradley is scheduled to complete a three-day alcohol educational class this week which will effectively terminate the case. This plea was accepted by the judge and entered into the record today (Tuesday April 29, 2014). Bradley is very focused and is excited about starting his NFL career."
Roby is among 30 prospects who have been invited to New York City to attend the draft. It remains unknown how seriously this situation will impact his draft status. There obviously will be some bad PR accompanying Roby because of the charge.
The Dispatch reported that Roby was arrested after a 911 call reported that a Dodge Charger "almost hit some kids on the sidewalk" and that the driver "was passed out drunk" in the vehicle, which had Georgia plates. Roby is from outside of Atlanta.
Police said Roby had an odor of alcohol and that he failed field-sobriety tests. He also submitted to a urine test. The traffic citation said a breath test by Roby showed 0.008 percent for blood alcohol, which is less than the 0.08 percent at which it is illegal to drive in Ohio.
Roby was arrested in July 2013 and charged with disorderly conduct after a fight outside a bar in Bloomington, Ind. The case ultimately was dismissed, but he was suspended for the 2013 season opener against Buffalo.
Mike Huguenin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. You also can follow him on Twitter @MikeHuguenin.