After having been arrested for suspicion of DUI on April 23rd, Mark Walton has been awaiting his day in court. There has been plenty of intrigue in this case, however.
Along with the DUI, there were rumors that Walton, a sophomore from Miami Booker T. Washington HS, had also impersonated an officer. After initial reports that Walton would be charged with that second crime, the police never charged Walton with impersonation. There were further rumors that Walton had actually been set up to have it look like he had been impersonating an officer by a group of individuals. If that seems like a lot, it is. This story has been crazy.
However, the craziness ended on Monday morning when the State Attorney dropped the DUI charge against Mark Walton. Veteran Journalist Andy Slater had an early scoop that this would happen today:
SLATER SCOOP: State Attorney will drop DUI charge against Canes RB Mark Walton when court begins at 930am, sources tell me.— Andy Slater (@AndySlater) July 11, 2016
And this was confirmed by multiple reports following the announcement at what would have been the first day of Walton's trial today.
Official: State drops DUI charge against Mark Walton.— Matt Porter (@mattyports) July 11, 2016
Being reported all charges have been dropped, Mark Walton Cane RB https://t.co/YttZKhHqlX— CANEINSIDER (@CANEINSIDER) July 11, 2016
What it means: First and foremost, reinstatement. Will Coach Mark Richt impose a suspension of any kind regardless? (Game or two). My guess here would be no. Hopefully Walton comes away with more maturity as well. Whether he did anything wrong or not is not the only concern. Staying out of the wrong place at the wrong time is also key for these young men. I would bet Richt emphasizes that, lifts the suspension, and the whole ugly mess is in everyone's real view mirror. On the field, it means UM has an exceptionally deep backfield. Walton might be the most talented all around player among the group. Joe Yearby is similar, but not quite as dynamic. Gus Edwards is bigger, but not quite as complete. Choc Gray is equally explosive but raw. Walton is exceptional for a player his size between the tackles, has great hands, and can break long runs. Long story short, this is great news for the Miami offense.
Stay tuned for more on this story in the coming days.