CORAL GABLES, Florida — Miami Safety Avantae Williams is back on the roster after the battery charges drop, though the Hurricanes say the sophomore freshman won’t make his on-field debut until the second half of the season at the earliest.
Williams was fired from the team earlier this summer after being confronted three times with an aggravated battery from a pregnant victim. The case was closed earlier this month after the woman, who was described in court papers as an ex-girlfriend, retracted parts of her story.
Miami coach Manny Diaz said the university has several benchmarks — described by the school as the areas “of education, mentorship and personal development” — that Williams must meet before he can play, and that he is not allowed to play in any of the first. six games for the Hurricanes. He will return to full training next month after completing a conditioning program.
“Our goal is to make the best Avantae Williams we can,” said Diaz. “That’s why we gave him the way back. There are some things we want him to be able to achieve that we think will help him, and helping him ultimately helps us as a football program.”
Williams, of DeLand, Florida, was ranked as the No. 1 safety in the 2020 recruiting class but did not play last season. Diaz said the university involved several people in the decision to reinstate Williams.
“The situation changed with the way the case was handled,” Diaz said. “Those decisions are definitely not made by one person. There’s a lot of communication with the administration at the university level, with the administration at the athletics department level. And really, what became our focus is ‘what we can do best for Avantae go forward.'”
Number 14 Miami sits at number 1 Alabama in the season opener for both teams on Saturday.
Diaz said Monday that he expects offensive lineman John Campbell, defensive lineman Thomas Davis and safety Brian Balom to miss the season with injuries. Linebacker Sam Brooks and tight end Dominic Mammarelli are also expected to be listed as out for Week 1, Diaz said.