Clemson University offensive tackle Isaiah Battle was ejected from Thursday night’s game against North Carolina State after delivering a vicious uppercut to an opposing player.
The incident occurred near the end of Clemson’s 26-14 victory over NC State, Yahoo Sports reports. Battle, a sophomore, became involved in an altercation with Wolfpack defensive back Jarvis Byrd and linebacker Brandon Pittman. While it is not yet clear what caused the confrontation, Battle ultimately responded by hitting Byrd with an uppercut to the jaw, knocking the defender to the ground.
Clemson head coach Dabo Swinney had an immediate reaction to Battle’s uppercut, removing the sophomore from the game. The coach also condemned Battle’s actions in a postgame interview, referring to the uppercut as a “poor” personal foul, Yahoo Sports reports. “That isn’t Clemson,” Swinney said.
Shortly after being benched, Battle was officially ejected from the game. Clemson has yet to reveal if Battle will face further disciplinary action for his uppercut.
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Battle, a sophomore offensive lineman from Brooklyn, N.Y., was once of the nation’s top offensive line recruits, SB Nation notes. He appeared in five games during the 2012 college football season, and has acted as a reserve during the first three games of this season.
This isn’t the first time that a college football player has earned criticism for punching an opponent. In 2009, LaGarrette Blount, then a running back for the University of Oregon, punched Boise State Broncos linebacker Byron Hout in the face, knocking him to the ground. The incident is believed to have played a major role in Blount’s freefall in the 2010 NFL Draft.