Two University of Montana basketball players, Will Cherry and Keron DeShields, were arrested along with a third man early Saturday morning after a disturbance downtown, according to the University of Montana and Missoula police.
The incident was reported at 2:04 a.m. at 125 W. Front St., according to Sgt. Rick Stevenson. Police didn’t identify the business, but that’s the address for Stockman’s Bar.
Cherry, 22, faces misdemeanor charges of disorderly conduct and resisting arrest, while DeShields, 20, is charged with disorderly conduct. A 34-year-old man, Jason Shawn Snyder, is charged with possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia, as well as disorderly conduct.
All three are to appear Monday in Missoula Municipal Court.
Stevenson said police responded to a report of a physical fight and separated the men.
“There was an unfortunate situation involving our guys and we’re still trying to get all the facts,” Montana men’s basketball coach Wayne Tinkle said. “We’ll take a look at the student conduct code and see what we have to do. Obviously, we want to make sure we have all the information about the altercation and about how everything came down. Our guys know what’s expected of them, from our program and from our university. We’ll make sure that we get to the bottom of it all.”
Cherry, from Oakland, Calif., was a senior for the Griz last season and was named to the All-Big Sky first team for the third straight season. DeShields, a guard from Baltimore, was a sophomore last season.
Tinkle said Cherry was tased by police during the incident.
“First and foremost we’re concerned about Will’s health,” Tinkle said. “When he’s up to it, we’ll be able to sit down with him.
“Will is still enrolled and is graduating in a couple of weeks. Keron is moving forward with us. The student-athlete conduct code is pretty clear-cut. We have to make sure we have all the facts before we make any decisions. Obviously, it’s a situation we would have preferred didn’t happen with our student-athletes.”
Montana athletic director Kent Haslam echoed Tinkle’s comments.
“I’m certain there will be punishments levied,” Haslam said.
“(The student-athlete code of conduct) has a variety of parameters. We have quite a bit of latitude in what we can do. It does set minimums based on the category of the offense. It runs everything from being put on probation, to a formal reprimand, to notifying the parents all the way up to suspension of games and then the top punishment is removal from the team.
“We’ll want to understand completely what happened and we’ll rely on a police report and other incident reports.”
That same area was the scene last weekend of a disturbance involving an assistant UM football coach and a football player. Because a business owner declined to press charges, their names were not released. But UM officials said the coach has been sanctioned and that the player was interviewed.
“We’ve talked to the football player and there are privacy issues that deal with that since there was no police report or charges filed,” Haslam said. “We feel like we have a good idea of exactly what happened. A lot of it, to be honest with you, was horseplay and some silly decisions, that type of thing. We will take care of that through the student code of conduct as well.”
Haslam, who was promoted to athletic director last September, said he’s “tired of dealing with some of this, to be honest with you.
“It’s disappointing and frustrating. We talk and talk about good decision-making and putting yourself in good positions and it gets frustrating when things like this happen.”
Reporter Gwen Florio contributed to this story.