ROCKFORD, ILL., JUNE 13 -- The Washington Commandos announced three cuts and a trade today. The moves reduced Washington's roster to 18 players. The roster limit of 16 will be reached Monday or Tuesday, Commandos Coach Bob Harrison said.
Released were Danny Todd, 25, a 6-foot-1, 235-pound running back/linebacker from Washington; Dennis Hickey, 24, a 6-1, 240-pound lineman from Graceland (Ia.) College and Maurice Harvey, 31, a 5-10, 180-pound wide receiver/defensive back, who played with four NFL teams between 1978 and 1984.
Running back Eddie Phillips was traded to Chicago for linebacker/offensive lineman Mike Witteck. The 6-0, 207-pound Phillips was the first player signed by the league, and probably would have started for the Commandos. Phillips is an ex-Iowa player who lives in Chicago, and Harrison said, "family problems" were the primary reason for the trade. The 6-1, 220-pound Witteck, who is from Northwestern, likely will have a key role with Washington, Harrison said.
Of the 75 players still in the league, 11 are from the Washington area. Five of those are with the Commandos: Peter Stubbs, Sean McInerney, Dale Castro, Kurt Beathard and Hewritt Dixon. Washington's season opens Friday at Pittsburgh against the Gladiators.
Of the other local players, three were assigned to Pittsburgh: Mike Hohensee, 26, a 6-0, 205-pound quarterback from Germantown who played with the USFL's Washington Federals; Russell Harriston, 23, a 6-3, 206-pound wide receiver/defensive back from Lanham and Jim Rafferty, a 6-1, 190-pound wide receiver/linebacker from Woodbridge.
Reggie Smith, 29, a 5-6, 170-pound running back from Oxon Hill is with Chicago. Richard Prather, 26, a 6-0, 220-pound running back/defensive back from Rockville and Frostburg State is with Denver along with Steve Trimble, 29, a wide receiver/defensive back from Maryland who played for the Denver Broncos and the USFL's Denver Gold.