Murfreesboro, TN (The Tennessean) - Middle Tennessee State quarterback Dwight Dasher is the focus of an "ongoing inquiry" by university officials and the subject of an MTSU Police investigation, according to an incident report on file with campus police.
"Information was reported to the university involving student-athlete Dwight Dasher," MTSU Athletics Director Chris Massaro said in a statement.
"Under the direction of President Sidney McPhee, the university's Judicial Affairs Office, Sun Belt Conference, and the NCAA (have) been informed of this information. Similar to any case involving any student, we take these matters very seriously. Since it is an ongoing inquiry, the institution is unable to comment further until it is concluded."
MTSU Athletic Communications Director Mark Owens said Dasher and Coach Rick Stockstill will have no immediate comment, per Massaro's statement.
Dasher, 22, of Folkston, Ga., is accused of failing to repay a "large sum of money ... (he borrowed from) a patient at the VA Hospital (Alvin York VA Medical Center)," according to an incident report. The same report names Dasher the subject of "another ongoing investigation."
The incident report does not state the nature of that investigation. Police have made no official comments on the matter.
Oliver M. Donnell, 80, is named as the complainant in the money dispute Another complainant is Dasher's teammate, Colin Boss, 21, of Temple Terrace, Fla., a junior offensive lineman.
Donnell told WSMV-4 that he loaned Dasher a total of $1,500 in exchange for a blank check for collateral.
Two days after Donnell filed the report, Boss went to Murfreesboro Police Department in reference to some of his checks being stolen. Donnell said the checks Dasher gave him as collateral were from a Temple Terrace, Fla., Bank with Boss' name on them. The checks were never cashed.
Boss told dispatchers that he was "unsure where" they were stolen in the city, according to a computer assisted dispatch report on file at MPD. But the report makes no reference to Dasher.
Massaro said Dasher has not been punished, and his status for MTSU's Sept. 2 season opener against Minnesota has not been determined.
"We're still in the middle of looking into this so until we reach a conclusion, there will be no action," Massaro said. " ... We have time to process all our information (before the Sept. 2 game). We're just not at that point yet, to be able to comment and to be able to administer punishment, penalty or be able to say that there is no penalty. We are just not at a conclusion.
" ... We are still reviewing what we know and trying to process the information. We have to ask questions ourselves, and any time we have any kind of suspicion or have any kind of tips, it's practice for us to notify our conference office and the NCAA."
Donnell has spoken with a lieutenant of the MTSU Police Department in reference to the money allegedly owed by Dasher, according to the MTSU incident report.
However, MTSU Police Chief Buddy Peaster could not immediately be reached for comment on the matter, and Rutherford County Sheriff Office Deputy Chief Virgil Gammon told the Daily News Journal the sheriff's office is not investigating the matter. Security at Alvin York VA Medical Center also is not investigating.
Dasher's relationship with Donnell, the patient at the VA Hospital, is not confirmed. MTSU football players visited the VA Hospital last year, according to a Nov. 13, 2009, photo gallery on GoBlueRaiders.com, the university's athletic website. However, Dasher is not pictured in any of the photos from the visit.
Separately, Dasher filed a June 22 incident report with MTSU Police from a party at Campus Crossing Apartments, alleging someone fraudulently used his credit/student financial aid debit card with "an estimated value allegedly (of) $1,000."
Aside from Dasher, MTSU has only two full-time quarterbacks on the roster, junior-college transfers Logan Kilgore and Jeff Murphy.
Neither has played in a Division I game.
Dasher, a senior, is one of the most celebrated players in MTSU football history. He led the Blue Raiders to a 10-3 record and New Orleans Bowl victory last season while becoming only the fourth player in NCAA history to post 2,500 passing yards and 1,000 rushing yards in the same season.
Dasher was named Sun Belt preseason offensive player of the year and is on several prestigious preseason watch lists, including the Walter Camp national player of the year award.
Dasher has even been mentioned nationally as a darkhorse Heisman Trophy candidate.