CIAA Championship game canceled after fight
Winston-Salem State University quarterback Rudy Johnson was attacked by five Virginia State football players during a conference banquet on Friday. Johnson was attacked while in the men's restroom on the WSSU campus.
Johnson had gone 9-0 as starter for Winston-Salem State, and his squad was set to face off with Virginia State for the Central Intercollegiate Athletic Association conference championship on Saturday. Due to the attack, the conference decided to cancel the championship game.
"Based on the incident that occurred today, and after consulting with the leadership of each institution and the football and volleyball championship committees, the CIAA is saddened to announce that this weekend's football and volleyball conference championships that were scheduled to take place in Winston-Salem have been canceled," CIAA Commissioner Jacqie Carpenter said in a statement. "Our singular focus is on the safety and security of the CIAA's student-athletes and those who follow them."
Calls to Virginia State media representatives were not immediately returned, but reports showed that Lamont Darnell Britt, 22, a junior running back from Portsmouth City, Va., was arrested by Winston-Salem State campus police and charged with misdemeanor assault.
The quarterback Johnson had a swollen eye and a laceration above the eye, according to the reports.
While the story continues to evolve, Winston-Salem State officials are trying to make sense of the attack.
"There is no excuse for the behavior of the Virginia State players," WSSU Chancellor Donald J. Reaves said in a statement. "Today's event was supposed to be a celebration for both teams and for all the players who were being recognized for an outstanding season. The actions from the Virginia State players certainly changed the outcome for everyone."