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Rees pleads guilty to misdemeanor charges

Jul 23, 2012, 5:31 PM EDT

Getty Images - Jonathan Daniel Getty Images

Tommy Rees has pleaded guilty to two misdemeanor charges stemming from his May arrest. The Irish quarterback, who was originally charged with battery charges against a police officer, had the two most serious charges against him dropped, while pleading guilty to underage drinking and resisting arrest.

“I apologize to my family, friends, the Notre Dame community, Fighting Irish fans and the South Bend Police Department for my actions this spring,” Rees said in a statement. “I made a poor decision and I accept full responsibility. I learned a valuable lesson and witnessed first-hand that actions have consequences. This experience will make me a better person and I will focus on being a positive role model and citizen. To those who supported me during this difficult time, I offer my sincerest thanks. To the people I disappointed, I am dedicated to winning back your trust and confidence.”

The legal proceedings ended up being quite kind to Rees, whose plea agreement includes a 30 day suspended sentence, eleven months of administrative probation, 50 hours of community service, and a letter of apology to the officers involved. Early reports of an altercation between Rees and the arresting officer were highly exaggerated, with battery charges moving from felony to misdemeanor, and eventually being dismissed after conflicting reports emerged, including statements from the taxi driver at the scene.

While it has yet to be reported, Rees has already met with Res Life, the university’s disciplinary arm, and a source called the meeting “very productive.” With the legal proceedings cleared, any discipline of the quarterback is now in the hands of head coach Brian Kelly.

How Kelly decides to discipline his junior quarterback remains to be seen. Underage alcohol consumption hasn’t been a serious infraction with the Irish head coach, and while this incident was highly publicized, Rees has steered clear of any other trouble during his time in South Bend. The quarterback has been cleared and working out with his teammates all summer, reportedly leading offensive drills as the team prepares for a four-man quarterbacking battle when camp opens in August.

Linebacker Carlo Calabrese was also arrested during the incident at an off-campus house. He has yet to settle his misdemeanor charge.






  1. bernhtp - Jul 23, 2012 at 5:39 PM

    As I said before, my post from a few weeks ago predicted this exactly: a deal where he would plead guilty to minor consumption and misdemeanor resisting arrest, and punishment of community service.

    I am still waiting for the other part of the prediction to play out: suspension for the first two games.

    • nudeman - Jul 23, 2012 at 5:46 PM

      Yes, we all saw a reduction in charges coming. So not a big surprise.
      However, Keith writes here that his fate is in BK’s hands.
      I thought ResLife would be making the call?

      Doesn’t matter.
      Bury him on the depth charge and I’m just fine.

      • bernhtp - Jul 23, 2012 at 6:09 PM

        I predicted (and still predict) nothing from ResLife for two misdemeanors. They might give him a warning – maybe some form of probation and possibly more community service – but really nothing else.

        The issue has always been Kelly and whatever discipline the football program wants to impose.

        My prediction of a two-game suspension remains. We’ll see.

  2. andy44teg - Jul 23, 2012 at 6:09 PM

    Well, Nudie, ole buddy…You got your wish. Now, let’s see how BK handles this. Verrrrryyyyy Interesting…..

  3. georgegipp - Jul 23, 2012 at 6:35 PM

    How can things be settled with Res Life? I am sure he had an initial meeting with Res Life, but I thought Res Life waits until the legal process is over before handing down the University’s punishment.

    I think Rees’ actions call for FAR more than just a 1 or 2 game suspension. This is ND’s incumbent starting quarterback. He plead GUILTY to resisting arrest (even if only the misdemeanor variety). He was sentenced to 30 days in JAIL (even if the sentence was suspended). A token slap on the wrist just doesn’t cut it.

    Look, I am all for a more lenient and understanding Res Life. I spent 4 years with Bill Kirk leering at me through binocs from the press box just to make sure we weren’t drinking in the student section. And I think some of the punishments handed down from Res Life have been too severe (e.g. McAlarney, Yeatman).

    For those of us who think ND holds itself to a higher standard, this will be an interesting test. Given all that is happening in the college football world right now, I hope ND distinguishes herself from all the other programs who claim that they do the right thing (and in fact do otherwise). I hope we pass the test.

    • irish4006 - Jul 23, 2012 at 7:25 PM

      I hope they can find the balance. What did he really do wrong? An (almost) 20 year old college kid drinking in an off campus party, then trying to run away when the cops arrived; how much punishment does it really warrant? When we did such things, it was okay. Since he is a QB in the football team, it becomes a big deal. I hope the punishments are not too bad.

      What Floyd did, in my book, was not okay since he was driving under the influence and thus putting other people in danger. TR, not so much.

      I would absolutely hate to see him start as our QB, but that is for different reasons. Not because of this.

      • nudeman - Jul 23, 2012 at 7:42 PM

        You’re right. We’ve all been there:
        Off campus party, gets a little loud, cops break it up
        There but for the grace of God goes me.
        This was not a HUGE deal, but it was not insignificant

        He’s not just a “20 year old college kid”. He’s in many ways the face of ND
        Starting QB for the most storied program in the nation
        And he KICKED/KNEED A COP.

        Last point:
        Hardly a day goes by here without someone saying words to the affect of “We are ND”; or “We are different”; or “We hold ourselves to a higher standard”

        From afar, that’s all true
        Now is their latest chance prove it

      • bernhtp - Jul 23, 2012 at 9:06 PM

        re: “And he KICKED/KNEED A COP”

        Nude, here is the relevant part of the article you apparently missed:

        “Early reports of an altercation between Rees and the arresting officer were highly exaggerated, with battery charges moving from felony to misdemeanor, and eventually being dismissed after conflicting reports emerged, including statements from the taxi driver at the scene.”

        It is as I strongly suspected and opined at the time of the incident. While I believed that he tried to get away, I never believed he intentionally tried to assault a cop. Whether his knee came up as a reflexive response to an aggressive restraint maneuver by the cop is another story. Apparently, enough facts emerged to put the incident into perspective – underage drinking at a party, running from the cops, and then getting chased down and physically arrested with some minor collateral damage to the cop – with the consequent results.

        While I am on record of not being a Tommy fan as QB, there is nothing in his past that even hints at criminality. As I’ve also said, South Bend (and Indiana State Alcohol Task Force) cops have a long history of picking on Notre Dame students, especially around exam-end time when they (understandably) party hardest.

        Given where I and most of the rest of us have been, I:

        1. Don’t blame Tommy for going to a party and drinking.
        2. Don’t blame Tommy to running from the scene when the cops came to bust the part given the history of police arrests for drinking.
        3. Do blame him for not stopping and raising his hands before the cop needed to physically grab, restrain and cuff him.

        Tommy’s legal ordeal is all about #3 as will be any football program discipline. I stand by my prediction of suspension for the first two games. I seriously doubt he will be on the plane to Ireland.

        Finally, ND is different and will remain so regardless of how this insignificant incident is ultimately disposed of.

      • idratherbeinsouthbend - Jul 23, 2012 at 9:11 PM


        A few honest questions for you

        Why do you hate TR so much? Why the constant campaign to drag him through the mud? What makes you think that you’re internet view of the Irish is better than BK’s?

        I’m amused and often educated by your comments on these boards, but i’ve never seen a man proclaim that he “knows” so much about things that can not be known.

        With all things TR, you’ve kinda become the Dick Cheney of these boards…floating a mindset that “there is only one right opinion, and it is mine”

        (wouldn’t be hilarious if you actually WERE Dick Chaney)!

      • georgegipp - Jul 23, 2012 at 9:41 PM

        Irish4006 – to clarify, my comments above have nothing to do with who should start or not. Although I think the question of who is under versus Navy is important, I am far more concerned about the ND doing the right thing for our student athletes and for the University as a whole.

      • nudeman - Jul 24, 2012 at 9:42 AM


        1. I didn’t miss that at all. However I’ve also read just the exact opposite about the altercation. Prister and Sampson commented in a podcast a while back that the resistance Rees put up was quite a bit MORE than what was reported.

        2. Keith has been doing all sorts of gymnastics now for 2 years defending Rees in ways no one else does. Where you and I and others see the glass as 1/8th full where Rees is concerned, Keith sees him as just needing to work on his long ball a little bit and “he’ll be just fine”. For reasons we might never know, I don’t think Keith is objective where Rees is concerned.

        3. Having said all this, it’s just about over. BK needs to announce what his plan is and get this behind us. Like now.

      • nudeman - Jul 24, 2012 at 9:53 AM

        1. I am not Dick Cheney.
        2. I have never shot a friend in the face.
        3. I actually like Tommy … compared to how I feel about Cheney.

        I have said a thousand times, I don’t hate Tommy. But honestly, I can’t exactly say I like the guy either.

        In the early days of his career (2010), I was an immediate detractor. He never looked good to me at QB and his “successes” were greatly exaggerated. Against Utah he threw for something like 130 yards. Against USC, he threw 4 picks and fumbled.
        Beat Army. You and Keith and I could beat Army.

        So fast fwd to 2011. He literally got a little worse every week and overall cost them at least 2 games. At the beginning I faced a wave of Tommy supporters. Where have they all gone?

        So one more time:
        1. I don’t know more than BK. This is a blog where people are allowed to express their opinions.
        2. Tommy seems like a good kid; I don’t hate him.
        3. Tommy however also seems immature and is a pouter. Not a leader at all
        4. Tommy is not a good QB.
        5. It drives me nuts that BK has held him completely unaccountable for his bad play.

  4. 808raiderinparadise - Jul 23, 2012 at 7:36 PM

    Its July 23rd …. I think the whole team needs to know who is the starting QB now ,as well as the media, fans so the transition will ease to the opener. But knowing BK he will name a starter 10 days prior to opener.

    • nudeman - Jul 23, 2012 at 7:58 PM

      Guess is the team knows
      Not saying BK has told them and asked them to pinkie swear and not tell anyone.
      But they’ve played for 1.5 years now with Tommy Rees as their QB
      Then they’ve watched films the following Monday of all his miserable crap

      They saw (in succession) the games against BC, Stanf, FSU and B&G
      Whether they SAY so or not, they KNOW he CAN’T get it done

      And supposedly Golson has grown up quite a bit in the last few months.
      Played well in the Spring game and very well on these not so voluntary workouts

      They can add 2+2 and get 4.
      I hope

      • ndgoldandblue - Jul 23, 2012 at 8:42 PM

        I don’t know, nude. Something deep down keeps telling me that Tommy is going to be the starting quarterback in September. Just a bad feeling, I guess. If that is the case, though, then the ship has sailed for both Hendrix and Golson, and Kelly has hitched his wagon to Gunner.

        • nudeman - Jul 23, 2012 at 9:01 PM

          I’ve gone back and forth on this 20 times, from being 100% convinced Kelly will start Rees to being certain Golson is the man. I’d say though that if I’m Golson and I don’t get the job, I’m gone after this year. Or sooner.

          AH I get the feeling loves the ND environment and they’d have to drag his ass out of there to get him to leave.

          But if they can somehow get through this year with at least not beating themselves via bad QB play – regardless of who plays – the future looks better with Gunner and Zaire who’s getting rave reviews at these summer camps they go to.

      • c4evr - Jul 23, 2012 at 9:15 PM

        I can’t for the life of me understand why TR has been given such a long leash. I may be reading too much into these things, but judging by the player interviews I can find on youtube, Rees is the only QB that exudes a ‘swagger’. He’s almost aloof compared to AH’s ‘I’m just excited to be here’ and EG’s ‘I’m starting to get things nailed down’. Perhaps that’s BK’s reasoning – his level of confidence is higher. But Kelly contradicts his own choice by continuing to hand over the reins to Rees after setting the precedent with Crist and a quick hook. I hope the team knows who the QB will be – if they don’t, that’s a failure on BK’s part to show leadership.

        • nudeman - Jul 24, 2012 at 9:32 AM

          BK has not handled the QB position well so far. Throwing Crist off the bus then backint it up and running over him is something I’ll never understand. And why? So he could play TOMMY REES? Wtf.

          BTW, “swagger” is 18th on my list of 17 important things I need to see in a QB. It’s behind things like arm strength, not throwing INTs, being able to escape a rush, and being a leader.

          And I don’t see any “swagger” from Rees. As I’ve said before I see an immature, petulant kid who doesn’t handle adversity well and pouts. And he’s a lousy QB.

    • bernhtp - Jul 23, 2012 at 9:57 PM

      Here’s an extended prediction. Kelly has a press conference soon (maybe right before first practice) where he announces:

      1. Football suspension for Tommy Rees for two games (at least Navy in Dublin).
      2. The starter for the game(s) where Tommy is suspended will be the result of a competition between Golson and Hendix. Each will get 50% of the first team snaps for two weeks whereupon the starter will be named. Both players will likely get time in the Navy game.
      3. Kiel, as a freshman, will be given a chance to learn the offense and develop, but won’t compete for the starting job at the beginning of the season.

      Kelly will be asked if Tommy will get the starting job when he returns. Kelly will respond, I don’t know, it depends, and I’ll cross that bridge when we get there. If Golson and/or Hendrix show they have game, Rees will spend the rest of the season wearing a read had and gesturing from the sidelines.

      • jerseyshorendfan1 - Jul 23, 2012 at 11:36 PM

        bern, you are the man with the predictions on this board. I may start calling you Carnac the Magnificent. I used to love that old Johnny Carson bit. Here are a few I remember:

        Carnac: Sis, boom, bah.
        Question: What sound does an exploding sheep make?

        Carnac: A double and a triple; a catcher’s and a fielder’s; and Dolly Parton.
        Question: Name two big hits, two big mitts and a country singer.

        Carnac: Until they get caught.
        Question: How long do congressmen serve?

        Anyway, good stuff bern. I hope the fleas of a thousand camels don’t infest your shorts.

        And Nude… should be relieved that Tommy is going to work hard to regain your trust. Doesn’t that presume that he had it to begin with? God help us if he starts in Dublin.

      • jerseyshorendfan1 - Jul 23, 2012 at 11:41 PM

        One more……….

        Carnac: Knickerbocker.
        Question: what do you want to avoid when shaving her bocker?

  5. ajw21 - Jul 23, 2012 at 7:57 PM

    I really dont care if Rees gets suspended. Like most I dont want him to start this year but for the posters saying Rees needs to be suspended, I didnt hear you when Floyd didnt get suspended. I think if anything Kelly needs to be consistent. You cant go easier on the more important players, if we do that we are no different.

  6. cpfirish - Jul 23, 2012 at 8:27 PM

    When does fall practice start?

    • nudeman - Jul 23, 2012 at 9:05 PM

      Are you the same one who’s asked this 15 times now?
      Here’s the answer: No Fall practice this year
      Cost saving move by Swarbrick
      And they’re confident enough from the 7 on 7 drills to just wing it in the opener
      It’s just Navy

      August 4th, dude

    • 1historian - Jul 24, 2012 at 7:10 AM

      not soon enough – the day before yesterday would suffice

  7. cpfirish - Jul 23, 2012 at 10:14 PM

    For every action, there is a reaction! And if and I said “IF” TR runs out onto the field against Navy then we know that BK has not a probably with alcohol related issues. Cause MF was arrested on DUI, and he played every game. Well at least BK will be consistent. In my opinion which means nothing, I don’t think TR will play the first two games. Having that being said then i think it would be beneficial to the ND team that BK names either EG or AH as the starter ASAP… That way everyone is on the same page come 9/1..
    And we all know who NUDEMAN wants come 9/1.. Right.. Lol…

  8. dickasman - Jul 23, 2012 at 10:34 PM

    At least he had the “smarts” to fly under the child molester university radar. He’s a notre dame guy you know. Very smart. Now what about that wanna be Mexican headbutterer?

    • 1historian - Jul 24, 2012 at 4:02 PM

      what, my dear richard, is a ‘headbutterer’?
      More specifically, what is a MEXICAN headbutterer? Are we heading into P.C. waters here?

  9. runners00 - Jul 23, 2012 at 10:38 PM

    So, there you have it- no time, no felony and pretty much an underage drinking crime. Its a ashame, for sure,that our quarterback does a dumb thing like drink in public at an end of year party, but at least it sounds like he was treated ok. When I read about the striking a cop allegation I was very concerned for TR. sounds like that allegation was dropped. Throat said TR didn’t do himself any favors in trying to land a starting job.

  10. mtflsmitty - Jul 24, 2012 at 12:49 AM

    IdRatherBe…Good points in your last post. Nude is the most outspoken, but only one of the group who so confidently “knows”. And yes, it would be funny if he was DC. Condi more likely though.

    As for Hendrix’s 3 or 4 star designation…I do admire Nude’s approach to BSing in a debate. BS will authority and usually people won’t call you on it.

    Bern, the final post on the last article was you reminding us of you prognostications; then you humbly reminded us of the same in the first comment here. Then you followed with the most ambiguous predictions possible. TR suspended for two games (or maybe one). If TR announced as suspended, AH and EG will get 50/50 snaps in fall. Ya think? Both will see playing time in Dublin? No way! And TR will not start after his suspension if AH or EG distinguishes himself. Carnac indeed. Had you not been quite so self-congratulatory I certainly would have allowed the non-prediction to pass without remark. But we have to hold one another accountable. You’re better than that. :-)

    My prediction: Hendrix will start all season long, with Golson getting PT all season long.

  11. idratherbeinsouthbend - Jul 24, 2012 at 2:15 AM

    I know it’s a long shot, but let’s see if we can all agree on something…

    Toughest team on ND’s 2012 Schedule? USC? Okla? Somebody else?

    My money is with USC, Oklahoma is a close second, but I think Barkley is 500% better than Landry Jones. BTW, did you know that Landry Jones is 23 years old? He’s only two years from receiving his OU Booster Pension package. :)

  12. 1historian - Jul 24, 2012 at 7:20 AM

    What, pray tell, is ‘administrative probation’? Inquiring minds want to know.

    • jerseyshorendfan1 - Jul 24, 2012 at 10:19 AM

      One step up from double secret probation.

    • idratherbeinsouthbend - Jul 24, 2012 at 11:20 PM

      A ny
      D ipshit
      M ight
      I nfer That
      N o One
      I s
      S upposed
      T o Be
      R esponsible For
      A lcoholic
      T ommy
      I nciting
      V iolent
      E pisodes

      P erhaps
      R eliquishing
      O ffensive
      B ackfield
      A nd
      T otally
      I nfluencing
      O rgasm In
      N udeman

  13. 1historian - Jul 24, 2012 at 7:41 AM

    Herein a heartfelt plea from someone who went to ND but did not graduate but loves the place as much as any of you grads:

    PLEASE check your spelling, syntax, context, etc. before posting.

    E.G. – Bernhtp – Your 9:57 “Rees will spend the rest of the season wearing a read had and gesturing from the sidelines.”

    I’m going to assume that you MEANT “red hat” – otherwise what you said makes absolutely no sense.

    It’s not a huge deal, of course, nevertheless – non-grads who come to this site assume (I know how that works!) that you grads have a basic grasp of the english language.

    Don’t let us down

    • bernhtp - Jul 24, 2012 at 9:47 AM

      Yes, it was a typo – one of my worst. Occasionally that happens to me. Apparently a couple of synapses crossed and shorted out.

      I did notice it almost immediately upon posting it. Unfortunately this site does not have an edit option.

      I rarely check what I write in this blog. It normally comes out with reasonably good quality and don’t care enough about the remainder to spend a bunch of time proof reading before posting.

      • 1historian - Jul 24, 2012 at 4:06 PM

        apology accepted – all is forgiven. (Especially since it made me laugh)

        38 and a wakeup until the season starts!

      • bernhtp - Jul 24, 2012 at 6:19 PM

        One of the many high points of my time as a Notre Dame student was a literature course by Prof Ed Cronin (he died about a decade ago). One of his techniques for ensuring a higher quality of paper was to require students to sign a statement at the end of the papers that stated “I have read this paper out loud and listened.” He would give a zero if this signed statement was absent, and also knew when it was a lie.

        I quickly discovered that what sounds good writing/reading silently often sounds absolutely dreadful when read aloud, which was obviously his point. I still use this discipline when I seek the highest quality of writing.

  14. muir6 - Jul 24, 2012 at 12:27 PM

    He should have transferred after last year, it obvious that he has talent but the turnovers literally killed their season. Kelly looks miserable when He is in the game a fresh start for both would have been best. He is not goin to b a pro better to enjoy yourself then get screamed at and b a play away from bench. This is gonna b a disaster

  15. 10of14 - Jul 24, 2012 at 9:15 PM

    I look at it differently. If he was my athlete child under the age of 21 and did the same thing, I would personally suspend him for two games. Lessons folks…Lessons. Does the world according to football really come to an end if the kid sits out to well deserved games? No. Sit him and not just to send a message to him, but to other team members. Where are his parents…this is NOT the coaches call entirely; I would bench my son (who starts for his team too) with or without the coaches approval.

  16. georgegipp - Jul 24, 2012 at 9:56 PM

    Regarding the seriousness of the resisting, Keith indicates that reports have been “highly exaggerated”. Here’s another perspective. Would love to know the truth. From WNDU:

    “According to police, Rees ran from officer Brandon Stec onto Notre Dame Avenue. Police say a cab driver saw the pursuit and blocked Rees’s path. They say Rees raised his knee into the officer, knocking the wind out of him. Officials say the cab driver then grabbed Rees and kept him from running away. When the officer tried to arrest Rees, police say Rees scuffled with him and they both fell back on the pavement. Stec sustained scrapes to the arm in the struggle.

    Officers say Rees continued to try and resist arrest and was maced before being taken into custody.”

    Just the fact that he had to be maced indicates to me that it was fairly serious.

  17. cpfirish - Jul 24, 2012 at 10:44 PM

    Really…. Let’s all move past the TR incident.. We have Navy in 38 days.. The EG is going to light the place up!! Let’s hope EG gets a lot of reps with the first team O during fall practice.. Get all the bugs worked out and be ready to roll.. I predict that EG will have over 275 yards through the air against Navy..! Who is with me on this!??

    • c4evr - Jul 25, 2012 at 2:50 AM

      I’m with you… so when does Fall practice start anyway?

      • irish4006 - Jul 25, 2012 at 11:08 PM

        LOL… Sometime between now and September 1, I guess…

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