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Two former Texas A&M players charged with aggravated battery


Two former Texas A&M football players that were dismissed from the program Tuesday -- linebacker Darian Claiborne and defensive lineman Isaiah Golden -- have been arrested on charges of aggravated battery.

According to the College Station Police Department, the two players are accused of robbing three men at gunpoint May 23 after the three men agreed to purchase marijuana from Claiborne and Golden.

The police report reads in part: "three victims had entered into an agreement to purchase a quantity of marijuana from the suspects. When the suspects arrived at the apartment to complete the transaction, one of the suspects produced a handgun, pointed it at one of the victims while the other suspect took the money that was present to purchase the marijuana. While this was occurring, one of the victims stood up from the couch and was struck in the face by the suspect with the handgun."

It is unclear whether Claiborne or Golden was allegedly in possession of the handgun. Shortly before news broke of the arrests, the two were dismissed from the program through a release issued by Texas A&M.

"These two individuals have failed to meet the high expectations and standards that we have for our football players and as representatives of this university," Sumlin said. "These two players have exhibited a pattern of behavior that we will not tolerate at Texas A&M."

Claiborne was one of the few bright spots for Texas A&M on a miserably porous defense last season. He made 89 tackles to earn Freshman All-SEC honors, the highest tackle total of any freshman in the league. But his first year was a troubled one as well; he was previously arrested twice in a three-month stretch, which led to his suspension from the Aggies' Chick-fil-A Bowl win over Duke, as well as spring practice. Golden was also withheld from spring drills under suspension.

The seriousness of the charges put the football careers of both in jeopardy. If Claiborne and Golden get another opportunity to play college football, they'll have three options: 1) Transfer to an FCS school and have immediate playing eligibility; 2) transfer to another FBS program and sit out the 2014 season under NCAA transfer rules; 3) transfer to a junior college and play this fall, and return to an FBS program in 2015. The latter option is becoming a more popular one for suspended or dismissed players, a route that Auburn quarterback Nick Marshall and Alabama defensive lineman D.J. Pettway, among others, have taken.

Claiborne was also recruited by Arkansas, Texas Tech, Mississippi State, TCU, Nebraska and others. He made seven tackles for loss and a team-high two forced fumbles in the regular season, with nine starts. Golden was arrested on a charge of marijuana possession in February, resulting in his indefinite suspension. He made 32 stops last season after a season-ending injury to starter Kirby Ennis forced the freshman into more significant action.

*Follow Chase Goodbread on Twitter **@ChaseGoodbread*.

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