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Florida Football Captain Is Arrested for Burglary

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Safety Tony Joiner is the eighth Florida player in the last nine months to get in legal trouble, a growing concern for the defending national champions.

Joiner, a senior captain and defensive leader, was arrested early yesterday and charged with felony burglary, police said.

Joiner, who ranks fifth on the team with 20 tackles, was arrested around 5 a.m. outside the fenced impound lot of a local towing company, Gainesville police said.

But the owner of the property leased by the towing company, Stan Forron, said yesterday afternoon that the whole thing is "a big misunderstanding."

Joiner was accused of pushing a heavy electric gate open to enter the lot in an attempt to retrieve his girlfriend's car, which was being held in lieu of a $76 towing bill, a police report said.

Joiner was taken to the Alachua County Jail and later released on his own recognizance.

Forron said Joiner had made arrangements to pay the towing bill and pick up the car. But when Joiner arrived, no one was around to help him.

"It's like going to breakfast at Cracker Barrel and when you go to leave there's no one there to take your money," Forron said. "How long are you going to wait?"

Joiner was not at practice last night. Coach Urban Meyer stopped short of saying Joiner was suspended for Saturday's game at top-ranked LSU. . . .

Texas Tech linebacker Kellen Tillman was arrested on a marijuana possession charge, two days after being suspended for the Red Raiders' last game.

Tillman, a 23-year-old senior, posted $750 bond on a Class B misdemeanor charge of possession of under two ounces of marijuana and was released shortly after his arrest late Monday, the same day his suspension from the team was lifted. It wasn't clear why Tillman was benched for Texas Tech's 75-7 victory against Northwestern State. If convicted, Tillman faces up to 180 days in jail and a $2,000 fine.

¿ SOCCER: American midfielder DaMarcus Beasley became the first American to score for different teams in the European Champions League, and assisted on another goal, helping Glasgow Rangers to a 3-0 upset victory at Lyon in the first round of the European Champions League.

Manchester United, Arsenal and Internazionale of Milan also won in their second games of the opening round.

Beasley scored three goals for PSV Eindhoven during the 2004-05 Champions League.

In the other Group E game, Barcelona (2-0) won, 2-0, at Stuttgart (0-2) on second-half goals by Carles Puyol and Lionel Messi. Lyon also is 0-2.

Manchester United (2-0) won, 1-0, against visiting AS Roma (1-1) on a 70th-minute goal by Wayne Rooney in Group F. Sporting Lisbon (1-1) won, 2-1, at Dynamo Kiev (0-2) on first-half goals by Tonel and Anderson Polga. Vladyslav Vashchuk scoring for the home team.

¿ AUTO RACING: Dario Franchitti's much-anticipated move to stock cars will begin Friday with an ARCA race at Talladega (Ala.) Superspeedway, the Associated Press has learned.

The 2007 Indy 500 winner and IndyCar Series champion has agreed to a multiyear deal to replace David Stremme in the No. 40 Dodge for NASCAR's Chip Ganassi Racing, according to a person familiar with the negotiations who requested anonymity because the deal had yet to be announced. . . .

The Indianapolis 500 purse will be at least $13.4 million next year, an increase of $2.7 million from this year's record payout and the biggest one-year jump in the race's 91-year history.

The winner also will receive at least $2.5 million, some 42 percent more than the record $1.76 million paid to Buddy Rice in 2004.

-- From News Services

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