Former IU lineman Darius Latham arrested on OWI charge #iufb

Former Indiana University defensive tackle Darius Latham was arrested early Wednesday morning by IU police on a preliminary charge of operating a vehicle while intoxicated.

Latham, 21, was booked into Monroe County Jail at 5:40 a.m. and, according to the jail, remains in custody as of 3:30 p.m. His bond was set at $500 cash, $1,000 surety. Latham, a junior on IU’s football team last season, announced in late December that he would forego his final year of eligibility to pursue a career in the NFL.

According to a release from IU police, Latham was pulled over after an officer observed him driving a vehicle without its headlights activated near the intersection of East 10th Street and Indiana Avenue. Latham failed preliminary breath and field sobriety tests, according to police, and was transported to the Indiana University Police Department, where he failed to provide a sufficient breath sample during a chemical test. According to police, a warrant was obtained for a sample of Latham’s blood and he was transported to IU Health Bloomington Hospital where the sample was secured.

According to IUPD, Latham’s blood alcohol content is pending lab results.

The former four-star recruit arrived at Indiana following a standout high school career at North Central, where he starred in football and basketball. At IU, Latham made 81 tackles, 7.5 sacks and 18.5 tackles for a loss across his three seasons with the program. He was second on the team in 2015 with four sacks and finished third with 10 tackles for loss. Latham was recognized after the season as a Big Ten Honorable Mention selection.

Latham appeared at last month’s NFL Scouting Combine in Indianapolis, where he produced modest results. He is scheduled to appear at IU’s Pro Day on April 1.

25 comments

  1. This news saddens me. Not only is the timing terrible, but the consequences, at the very least, are going to cost him a lot of money, if not a career in the NFL. I hope he learns from this, gets this unwise behavior under control and can still have a career in pro football.

  2. Wow….Hard to believe these sort of habitual behaviors were kept quelled during playing days. Is it a question of never doing these sorts of reckless things that put the innocent in server harms way or is it that they just never got caught…or pursued? It always makes me wonder just how important are athletics and if the ‘blind eye’ is turned away for some while used as ‘wrecking’ labels for others.

    Getting behind the wheel while plastered or hanging out in a car full of vodka purchased by a player already expelled(and with a OWI previously on his record before being ousted), has no room for protection. Nobody is harmed by guys locked in their room toking on weed.

    There is a real alchohol abuse crisis on our college campuses….So many adults have addiction and reckless consumption issues it’s no wonder as to why it’s almost taught and regarded as a ‘normal’ way of life for the offspring of alcoholics ….It damages so many families and lives while being marketed on campuses as if its all as harmless as buying a box of Milk Duds at the Drive-In.

    Once you get plowed off of a highway by a drunk driver, the bleeding heart for little slaps on the wrist probably won’t do it for you. And none of this ever happens out of the blue…It’s simply the accepted addiction that will one day be behind a 3000 lb. hunk of steel pointed at your kid driving home for the weekend….

  3. He just cost him money and could make it harder to make it in the NFL. His suspension this year was probably for the same thing he was caught doing it this time. Kids being away from home as teenagers do things that can harm their life and it gets to be habit for many. I saw it many times as a bouncer while at IU.

  4. I feel no sorrow or remorse regarding any of the drinking, toking drug use, sexual assault, theft, fights with bodily injury etc. Opportunity of a lifetime is earned or unearned for a select few including the more average Joe ….thus comes along with that high stakes earned or unearned opportunity comes high stakes self responsibility. Some get to a mountain top just to stumble and fall off….they have a longer way to fall. Others wether earned or unearned meander at the base of the mountain trying to climb up throughout their entire lives.

  5. With the inflation of college cost an athletic scholarship is worth far more than it used to be. My daughter and her teammates competed in a conference that did not award athletic scholarships. After school, then practice, many, including my daughter, headed off to their jobs.

    Brutal.

  6. The idea of paying athletes beyond scholarships is 100% wrong….all the money that is supposedly made off college athletes (granted all injury and health issues should be taken care of) plus coaching salaries and other administrators including NCAA administration should be lowered to in the hundreds of thousands plus travel expenses and other expenses …NOT MILLIONS. All the extra money saved should be put in a bucket and spread across the board to lower the cost proportionately for a college education even if it would only save a penny for each student enrollee.

  7. I agree with you, t, as long as the full scholarship pays for the full cost of attending college. Currently, it does not. Closing that gap would amount to about $3,000 per academic year per athlete on full scholarship.

  8. t, coaching salaries and athletic department spending is driven by TV money and appearances on TV. With the fan driven support for games on TV and money the TV industry pours into the system the days of coaches salaries being limited are over but the coaches have a much shorter leash as they have to produce results.

    IUFB and similar programs give coaches extra time to build up the program but in the end they still demand success. All you have to do is just look at the Illinois FB hire to see the impact TV has on college programs. Schools made a choice years ago which is why IVY league schools that dominated football along with Army are not at the top of the game any more. They choose to keep limited athletic scholarships while other schools went with expanded scholarships to bring in more football talent. The latest conference expansions and signed TV deals will keep money in the game.

  9. I gotta admit, I get annoyed every time I read about someone grandstanding about fairness of the salaries of certain professions. Is is “fair” that a cop, or teacher or bartender in the US makes multiples of what someone in a third world country doing those exact same jobs would get? Isn’t it unfair to pay so much when others around the world earn so little? Think of a poor cop in Mexico that may be 3-4 times more likely to be killed in the lined of duty. Is it fair he or she only make a fraction of what a US cop makes? But no one ever turns the tables around like that. We make what we make in the US because our success and productivity have bid up the value of all professions. Football coaches make even more because the revenues they generate have bid up the value of their services. I’ve never worked for free and have always tried to maximize what I earned. I don’t begrudge those that have earned more. I’m thankful we live in a free society that allows us to pick our careers, chase our dreams and earn what we can. People should spend less time worrying about what other people make and more about improving their own lot in life.

  10. Yes, make it like the Ivy league and Army days….that would be great….Go back to college days that are higher institutions of learning.

  11. v13- you forgot to mention donors. Over half of athletic department budgets (for FB and BB) are funded by donations (free-will offerings to the gods of college sports), which leads us to 123 excellent point that multi-millionaire college coaches are the product of a free society expressing its preferences. We love this stuff, that’s why we watch the commercials and write the checks. Or at least watch the commercials.

  12. While I understand and appreciate the rationale of the monthly ‘stipend’ it just seems to open up the door for bidding wars on athletes. I do understand that a kid raised in poverty can’t call home for a few bucks just to get by while someone whose parents are college graduates or have a good union job can.

    Personally, I think relaxing the rules on outside employment is a better way. Sure, there used to be real issues (I’m sure there still are) with ‘no show’ jobs but, if a kid qualifies for a work-study program based on financial need then let them have a work-study job and pay them the same as every other student with a work-study job.

    So, you think that’s too much of a work load on the student athlete? Welcome to the world of the non-revenue sport athlete. That’s what ALL the gymnasts, runners, wrestlers, etc., do every day for their ‘stipend’. School, practice, go to work.

    A monthly stipend amount set by the individual schools takes away any resemblance to amateur athletics.

  13. Chet, I agree that work-study would be the best way to go with providing poor athletes a way to have some spending money. When I went to college I had no spare money and I did okay living that way. I wish more students and people could live without much money instead of spending money on consumer goods. If stipends were used there would be spending war on players unless the NCAA set a stipend that every athlete would get and not allow any extra money to be paid.

    Players are in a bind by the rules when on scholarship unless their family has money. Trying to change that opens up a can of worms with problems many can’t fore see but doing nothing is really taking advantage of athletes. Yes athletes get a college educations but limiting if they can work during the off- season creates problems for poor athletes. I don’t have the answers but something has to change.

  14. Chet- I’m not sure what “work-study” jobs are (I worked in a dorm cafeteria and later a restaurant while at IU, so I worked and studied, just not at the same time), but the problem for working of any kind by student-athletes is the time demand of the sport (revenue or not). I have no problem with a stipend that is equal for all players and all schools (to avoid the spending war problem).

    I’m not going to throw out any dollar figures, but I don’t have a problem if the stipend is generous (which is not to say outlandish). People buy tickets and watch tv to see the players, not anyone or anything else, thus it is the players who are responsible for producing revenue. Maybe non-revenue athletes could get a stipend (there’s certainly enough $$$ floating around) but even if not, it remains that FB and BB bring the eyeballs to the tv sets and water polo and wrestling do not. It just seems fundamentally unfair that the people responsible for generating millions and millions of dollars of revenue see, even when factoring in the value of tuition, such as small percentage of it.

  15. Well I worked my way through school and didn’t qualify for any financial aid. It was tough but doable. I made due on about 60% of what the University said it cost to go to school and I still had time for a social life. That said, I felt sorry a lot of times for the guys I knew on the football team. Yeah they had a scholarship and meals at the training tables sounded great. But they seemed to earn every penny. They were often exhausted and beaten up from practices and still had classes like everyone else. I sometimes worked 2 jobs and went full time but I don’t think an extra job for the athletes is realistic. Their training schedules seemed too demanding. I’d love to hear what any former players would think about holding down a job, going to practice and going to class.

  16. I would add that “t” does make a lot of sense about using college sports revenue to lower tuition “across the board,” except that the benefit would be far greater than a few pennies per student. I’m having no luck finding it on the internet, but several months ago there was an article in the Chgo. Tribune by some economist about the new TV deal between ESPN (I think) and the conclusion was that all students at schools in the NCAA could waive tuition for all students completely if the money from said deal could be pried out of the athletic departments. Which, of course, brings us back to the issue of our values as a society.

  17. 123,
    I worked my way through, too. I was also a student athlete in a non-revenue sport. I’d really have to know when you went to school to put that in context. I paid $365/semester tuition. My daughter paid $21,000.

    It’s not reasonable for me to tell my daughter she should be able to work her way through school. I’t not like that anymore.

    Even a state university is going to run you $30,000/year total cost.

  18. Chet- finished my MBA in ’96. But I think you are missing my point. Yes I was able to work my way through school. But even then I wouldn’t want to try to play football AND work an outside job. I’m sure its more difficult now but I remember the football players seemed both physically and mentally worn down by the demands of practice. The non-revenue sports player I knew (only one- a member of the tennis team) didn’t seem to have that same burden. I just don’t think its realistic to tell the football players they could also get an outside job to earn some spending money. Their sport seemed too taxing. And my opinion takes into account working while in school myself.

  19. First, revenue athlete are, for the most part, no longer allowed to have outside jobs. The NCAA has determined that their needs are paid for. Whether they are or not is another question.

    Secondly, I forgive your ignorance for thinking athletes in non-revenue sports somehow have less of a burden on them than athletes in revenue sports. I wouldn’t say that anywhere near the athletic department. You might be killed.

    If you think the physical demands on a football player or basketball player are greater than those of a wrestler is almost cute in its naivete. Basketball is ‘taxing’ compared to wrestling. That’s adorable. Take a look at the bodies of two comparable athletes sometime. The wrestler is the impressive one with all the scars. The difference in demands is that the revenue athlete gets a full scholarship. The non-revenue athlete usually has an outside job to go to after practice.

  20. There isn’t a basketball player in America who could make it through one of Dan Gable’s workouts.

    Yes. I have worked out with him…once.

  21. I liked football but was never going to make a living at it. Non-revenue sports athletes must come to terms with that same reality. At that point, athletes have to decide whether their choice to play is just a self-indulgent hobby. If it paid for your education, great. If not, a questionable choice.

  22. Chet- Not sure you were addressing me, but I was at IUB ’76-’80 and it seems like tuition was right around what you wrote. I think two semesters in a dorm ran about $1,200.00. Had to stand in lines at the HPER building to register for classes. I was fortunate in that I had a good summer job (steelworkers’ union) so that if I saved most of what I earned in the summer and worked during school I could cover just about all my expenses, my parents helped what they could. Only now do I realize how big a deal it is to have graduated debt-free. I agree that such would be impossible at today’s tuition rates.

    I have no idea about the relative burdens of the students in revenue sports v. non-revenue sports, even though my roommate (one year) was on the soccer team. All I know is that 1) he was not around very much 2) and he was in great shape.

    For all those out there who claim to value amateurism in college sports, there are plenty of opportunities to partake; there are tiny colleges all over the place which offer no scholarships for sports (and apparently no tryouts, either, from what I’ve seen) and for $3.00 you can see a college football game. You get what you pay for.

  23. 123,
    Well, that’s probably fair on a logical level but when has sports competition been about most efficient utilization of time?

    I met some of the most amazing people I am likely to ever meet when my daughter was in college. She was a hurdler and a hepthathlete at a D1 school whose conference does not allow athletic scholarships. They didn’t win national championships often but they got student athletes TO the championships. Their wrestling team was actually ranked #1 a few years ago though Iowa ended up winning the title.

    Anyway, every person I met on the track team was going to be a ‘doctor’ of one sort or another. That was their plans, anyway. My baby girl is working on her doctorate in PT.

    Her roommate was as beautiful as any woman I have every seen and her part time job after practice was modeling. After graduation she got her law degree from William and Mary and was immediately hired by the UN and sent to South Africa to work in the field of human rights. She was a long jumper and missed qualifying for the NCAA’s by 1/4 inch. I mention her not because she was extraordinary (well, her looks were) but because she was the norm for student-athletes at this school.

    Now, I appreciate that they were more prepared than the average student for this kind of success but they also found hours in the day to study and work I didn’t know existed. The suicide rate there is frighteningly high and lots of these kids come from families who raised ‘pushing’ to a new level (not our style). But these were the most humble and driven people I will probably ever meet, not to mention many of them were brilliant.

    My point is, being a football or basketball player with a full scholarship is a) no more physically demanding than, for instance, being a wrestler on the #1 ranked team in the country and, b) the demands and expectations of success for kids in this setting are far greater than a football player at Alabama or OSU who might reasonably be expected to be majoring in ‘General Studies’.

    Add to this an article I read the other day on the percentage of high school athletes who later compete in college. Again using wrestling as an example, a wrestler has a 2.6% chance of competing in college. In football it is more than twice that 6.5%. So, just getting there is statistically much easier.

    No, I don’t feel that life is terribly tough for competitors in revenue sports. Compared to other athletes they have it pretty easy.

  24. Chet- you make some interesting and thought provoking comments. Maybe you and the 3 other IU Wrestling fans in the world should put together your own blog? That way you could endlessly rehash the old glory days. Good luck and let me know how it turns out.

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