One of the most promising NFL prospects in college football is looking for a new team. Or perhaps, a new challenge.
Washington announced Thursday that cornerback Marcus Peters has been dismissed from the program. The school said it will honor Peters' scholarship through the completion of his degree.
Peters' dismissal comes after he argued with an assistant coach during practice Wednesday, the last in a series of problems with UW's new coaching staff, according to The Seattle Times.
"It's never one thing. We're not going to dismiss a guy because it's one thing," Huskies coach Chris Petersen said after practice, per The Times. "That's not what we're in this business (to be) about. But when you feel like it just can't work, you gotta do what you've gotta do."
Petersen confirmed that Naijiel Hale will replace Peters in the starting lineup, which means the Huskies will start three true freshman in the secondary.
Though immensely talented, if Peters, a junior, chooses to declare early eligibility for the 2015 NFL Draft, he'll have plenty to answer for regarding his conduct when he interviews with pro clubs at the NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis. Nevertheless, he's considered one of the top man-coverage defenders in college football. In fact, NFL Media analyst Charles Davis said Thursday that Peters is on a level with Oregon star cornerback Ifo Ekpre-Olomu, echoing what we heard from a Pac-12 head coach earlier this season.
"More than a few NFL teams would favor Peters, all things being equal," Davis said.
Peters was suspended for a game earlier this season after head-butting an opposing player, and throwing a tantrum on the sideline after being benched. He's not the only defensive back that has faced significant discipline for failing to get along with his coaching staff. Auburn safety Jermaine Whitehead reportedly had a verbal altercation earlier this season with an assistant coach, and was suspended for four games by coach Gus Malzahn.
Now, Peters faces a choice between seeking a transfer to another college to finish his NCAA eligibility, or turning pro. While it might seem like an easy decision for someone of Peters' talent, another year in college to repair a reputation for insubordination might be worth considering.
Peters and college underclassmen have until mid-January to declare whether they will enter the draft.