UPDATED: Five Toppers have been arrested this offseason

Mugshot from former power forward and defensive end Kene Anyigbo’s arrest on April 7.

Herald Staff

Sophomore running back Leon Allen’s arrest early Sunday morning brought the tally of WKU football players that have come into trouble with the law this offseason up to five.

Allen was arrested Sunday morning for second-degree disorderly conduct. He was released at noon on a $300 bond and is set to appear in court on Aug. 27.

This was the latest arrest for the WKU football team.

Senior defensive end Kene Anyigbo, a former forward on the WKU basketball team, was charged on April 7 with possession of marijuana and tampering with physical evidence. He has transferred in the months since then.

Senior punter Hendrix Brakefield, WKU’s starting punter last season, was arrested on May 23 and charged with alcohol intoxication in a public place. He was released eight hours later.

Sophomore kicker Mike Mugler was arrested on June 29 at 3:35 a.m. and charged with alcohol intoxication in a public place, resisting arrest, second-degree disorderly conduct and menacing. He was released at 1:10 p.m. on a $1,000 bond.

Senior fullback Kadeem Jones became the fourth Topper to get arrested this summer on July 13, when he was charged with driving under the influence. He was released later that morning on a $588.85 bond and was set to appear in court on Monday.

Jones, Allen and Brakefield all play for WKU on scholarship. Mugler is a walk-on, while Anyigbo was at WKU on a basketball scholarship and had joined the football team for the first time less than a week before his arrest.

All four players that are still with the program practiced on Monday, the first official practice of Fall Camp, but both Coach Bobby Petrino and Athletics Director Todd Stewart said WKU is not done handling the situation.

Stewart spoke during Monday’s practice about the state of the team in the wake of the arrests.

“First and foremost, one (arrest) is too many,” he said. “It’s not something that we condone, it’s not something that I feel good about, I guarantee it’s not something that Coach Petrino feels good about or our program or our entire athletics department. That’s not anything that we condone.”

While he does not condone the actions of the players, Stewart went on to say that in the big picture, the three arrests of scholarship athletes pale in comparison to how many total scholarship players are on the team.

“If you look across the nation, three out of 85 – you’re talking four percent of our football players – had an off-the-field transgression that were on scholarship, and that’s probably a pretty favorable ratio nation-wide,” Stewart said. “Now I’d like it to be 100 percent, I think we all would, but you guys know 18 to 22-year olds don’t always show the best judgment in all walks of life, not just in football programs, but across the nation.

“We work with them every day and I think our guys do a terrific job, really, but every now and then somebody makes a mistake and that’s what happened in these cases and I think the important thing is that they learn from it and everybody else on our team learns from it and we move forward from it together.”

Petrino also talked about the arrests after Monday’s practice.

The coach said the arrests were troubling to him and he plans to continue to work with his players on how to conduct themselves off the field.

“There’s no doubt that that’s not something that we want in our program,” he said. “We’re going to continue to work hard at it, we’ve been trying to really have our players focus on what it means to be committed, what it means to be dedicated to your sport and your body and we’ve got some work to do. We’re going to work hard on it every day.”

Stewart said Petrino will handle the discipline of the players and he believes the coach will do what’s right for each situation.

“Coach Petrino will handle that, and he’s handling it all internally,” Stewart said. “It’s certainly something that I know he takes very seriously and he’ll address it. Each case is different, each situation is different, but he’ll handle them all in a way that he feels is best and I’m totally comfortable with that.”

Petrino said he plans to determine how to deal with the players in the coming weeks.

“There’s definitely some requirements that everyone’s going to have and things that they’re going to be asked to do,” he said. “We’ll see how they do and we’ll make a decision when the time comes.”