After Wednesday’s loss in the Birmingham Bowl, Memphis defensive back Reggis Ball stole a ball from the Auburn sideline and ran off the field with it.
Shortly afterward, the school announced that Ball, a redshirt senior, had been dismissed from the team as a result of the incident.
“This player’s actions are totally unacceptable,” athletic director Tom Bowen said in a statement. “This player’s actions are totally unacceptable. He has been immediately removed from the team and we will continue to move swiftly in addressing what occurred.”
Ball appears to be making light of the situation by posting a photo of the stolen ball, now featuring his signature, on Instagram.
A fan posted a video of the incident on Facebook that shows Ball on the ground with what appears to be a member of Auburn’s equipment staff. There are conflicting reports about whether or not Ball tackled the staffer, or vice versa.
According to Dana Sulonen of the Opelika-Auburn News, Ball made an obscene gesture directed at Auburn while running off with the ball.
“We will certainly look into what happened and get the facts squared away,” Memphis interim head coach Darrell Dickey said, according to AL.com.
The Ledger-Enquirer reports that Ball has made attempts to steal footballs from opposing teams before, and that Auburn’s equipment staff was alerted that Ball attempts to take a ball from the opposing team every time he records an interception.
Ball registered five total tackles and two interceptions in the game.
- Dan Gartland