Philip Nelson had hoped to restart his college football career at South Alabama, but for now, he'll have to keep looking for another opportunity.
Responding to inquiries about Nelson, South Alabama Associate Athletic Director Brian Fremund issued a statement Thursday: "In reference to your earlier communication in regard to Philip Nelson, he will not be a member of the University of South Alabama football program. He remains a recruitable student-athlete, however, so no further comment may be made by members of the athletic department and coaching staff at this time."
Nelson's father, Pat, announced the son's plans to attend South Alabama last week, but somewhere along the way, the process stalled. The Nelson family could not be reached for comment.
Nelson played 19 games for the Gophers between 2012 and 2013 before transferring to Rutgers in search of a more pass-oriented offense. Rutgers kicked Nelson off its team last May after he was involved in a fight that left former Minnesota State Mankato player Isaac Kolstad with brain injuries.
Initially charged with two felonies – first and third-degree assault – Nelson eventually pled guilty to a fifth-degree assault misdemeanor and was sentenced to 100 hours of community service. He had considered transferring to Fresno State before a delay in the sentencing process last winter.
Nelson still has two years of eligibility remaining and can compete this fall. South Alabama, which is located in Mobile, went 6-7 last season, losing to Bowling Green in the Camellia Bowl.