Vol tight end Cameron Clear suspended after theft arrest

Cameron Clear

Cameron Clear

KNOXVILLE — Cameron Clear was sitting at the entrance to Neyland Stadium when University of Tennessee police caught him surfing the Internet with a laptop stolen from a fellow athlete, court records show.

Clear might be out of jail, but he's off the football field — at least for now.

The UT sophomore tight end logged into a jail cell Tuesday after campus police traced the laptop's Wi-Fi signal to Gate 2 at the stadium around 1:30 p.m., court records released today show. He was still online when officers walked up, according to an arrest warrant.

Head football coach Derek Dooley suspended Clear indefinitely this morning, said Jimmy Stanton, UT associate athletics director for communications. He gave no other details.

"We are continuing the process of gathering more information," Stanton said.

Clear, 19, of Memphis, faces a charge of felony theft of up to $10,000. He was booked into jail Tuesday night with a bond set at $2,500.

UT baseball pitcher Jeffrey Brandon Zajac had reported his laptop, a MacBook Pro, stolen from his Lake Loudon Boulevard dorm room on May 19, according to an arrest warrant.

UT police detected Tuesday someone was using the laptop to log into the university's wireless network and caught Clear sitting at the keyboard, according to the warrant.

"Upon my arrival, I saw Mr. Clear sitting with a silver MacBook in his lap," UT police Cpl. Ben Doty wrote. "Once he saw the officers, he closed the laptop."

The laptop's serial number matched the stolen MacBook, Doty wrote.

Clear, who's 6-foot-6, 283 pounds, ended spring practice as the backup to starting tight end Mychal Rivera. He caught only one pass last year as a freshman but was expected to play a more prominent role in the offense this season.

Clear was one of the most heralded signees in UT's 2011 recruiting class. In his senior season at Memphis Central, he caught 18 passes for 250 yards and six touchdowns. He also had 60 tackles and eight sacks on defense.

More details as they develop online and in Thursday's News Sentinel.

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Comments » 254

kcbigorngX writes:

6 game suspension.

I've never believed in zero tolerance but theft is a more serious issue than other sophomoric endeavors.

BrassMonkey writes:

Dumb coach. Dumber players.

Volunteer-Varmint writes:

If he's found guilty, send him packin. One bad apple spoils the bunch.

Show em Dooley that this cacca won't fly.

GBO!

OTPVol writes:

"Hello? Cameron? This is Gene Chizik..."

richvol writes:

What a moron...

burpee_von_rotweiler_IV writes:

"Uh,it's my cuzzin's laptop. Yeah, that's it!"

Actually, he might not be the actual theif but instead bought it at Midnight Electronics LLC. Or he might be the real thief. Same difference.

wally writes:

in response to BrassMonkey:

Dumb coach. Dumber players.

Dumb coach? WTH? Dumb post for sure.

FearlessFreep writes:

He should be kicked off immediately. Not doing so will just create a huge mess for Dooley down the road.

VolGrad writes:

I did some stupid things when I was that age, but theft never entered my mind. I guess I grew up too far from Memphis to conceive of that.

I agree that a several game suspension be dealt out to Cam. Clearly he has some personal integrity issues to sort out. And if he can't stay out of trouble to the end of that suspension, then you make it indefinite or send him packing. But you've got to be able to say that you gave him an opportunity to turn it around.

summer416 writes:

How stupid can one person be?? Does he not know they can track the computer via IP address and usage? I do not understand why people screw their lives up over something so trivial. Good thing our football coach is also a lawyer!!

usafvol writes:

in response to BrassMonkey:

Dumb coach. Dumber players.

Dumb Trolls!

CommodoreCapital writes:

When you recruit people that steal from their own family (Bonner)you get what you have coming.

Same Ole Vols.

thevoice writes:

I bet he was thinking the jail had wi-fi.

UT-on-3 writes:

kick him off the team ASAP!

crappieking writes:

Dooley will be fired by the 6th game, so I guess it's fitting.

FLVOL_79 writes:

Looks like he's got some gatard in him. Theft is serious..see ya.

PUL4VOLS writes:

Cameron, you may just be Clear for takeoff from what could have been a great opportunity for the rest of your life and for what? All the trash of "what I did at that age" is a crock. Even people from Memphis know better. Unless there are some unreported circumstances this needs to be dealt with decisively. But no matter how Dooley handles it, You(andyouknowhoyouare)on here will continue the nega-spew. So just go ahead and get it out of your system early.

VolGrad writes:

in response to TennVolAlum:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Considering his sphere of influence for the past 17-18 years, when has he "had time to learn?" Bad company spoils even good character. Apparently there is plenty of bad company in the neighborhood he is from. But I'm not even sure that matters from a coach's perspective. As a coach, you have to give the kids entrusted to you a chance to redeem themselves if at all possible..., at least one chance anyway.

And you must have been a very blessed, fortunate, and wise kid by 18. I was the first two, but I can hardly say I was anywhere near wise at that age. And knowing something is wrong rarely kept any of us from doing it anyway; I just never stole anything - more a testament to my upbringing than any personal wisdom. It is too easy to judge when you haven't walked in the shoes of the one you're judging. I think we have to be a little slower to make such judgments.

gc_scvol writes:

in response to BrassMonkey:

Dumb coach. Dumber players.

As per your promise of Nov. 3, 2010, would you be willing to post a picture of the tatoo on your forehead, or was that just idle chit chat?

hueypilot writes:

This is all my fault. Last week at the Big Orange Caravan in Jacksonville, as Dooley was speaking, my mind wandered and looking for that ever-elusive silver lining, I was thinking "Well, at least we haven't a big thug moment in quite a while." Bingo. My fault.

dwolfcreek#397971 writes:

in response to BrassMonkey:

Dumb coach. Dumber players.

You are the expert on dumb , i've noticed .

tnseamstress writes:

Suspension? No, he needs to be sent packen. I'm sure there are more players standing in line wanting to play that have more integrity than this guy. 19 years old, I will bet he's done it before.

Volencheaters writes:

At least he had good taste. Passed up a few IBM's, Dell's and a HP to get the MacBook. Go big or go home right?

Virgil writes:

Stupid is as stupid does. Not a student, just another football thug to please the masses in the stadium. Send'em home.

NashvillePreds writes:

in response to CommodoreCapital:

When you recruit people that steal from their own family (Bonner)you get what you have coming.

Same Ole Vols.

28-1

CommodoreCapital writes:

in response to NashvillePreds:

28-1

Considering the UT football GPA, maybe Cam is dyslexic, and thought his name was on the computer.

lyafarre writes:

I agree with those saying he should face a suspension of some sort, but not necessarily be kicked off the team. He's going to face plenty of punishment through the legal system, and he's still basically just a freshman. With plenty of engagement from the Vol's character development program, he can grow from this experience.
That said, his margin for error is pretty much gone. (And I'm assuming his history with the team is clear up to now - the argument changes if it isn't).

Huttdawg100 writes:

in response to kcbigorngX:

6 game suspension.

I've never believed in zero tolerance but theft is a more serious issue than other sophomoric endeavors.

Honestly, I can't agree. For 4.5 years my nights ended in the Hodges library computer center because my single mom couldn't afford to by me a computer. The attendants that worked at the counter knew my name and birthday. They knew that I had a crazy, senile (and loving) grandfather that thought he was a wrestler. Computers and laptops are available for Clear. He didn't have to steal anything. Clear has got to go.

With that said, the NCAA needs to give these guys the option to get jobs and make money. Some of these guys need the cash to buy laptops so they don't have to walk from Hodges to Gibbs at 12:30. What Clear did is inexcusable, but the NCAA and these universities are benefitting from these kids from tough backgrounds. It's time to pay them.

Biggie writes:

in response to BrassMonkey:

Dumb coach. Dumber players.

Or; Brassmonkey see, brassmonkey do.

Buttwipe

AlpharettaVol writes:

This may be out of the university's hands. If he is convicted of a felony he may actually go to jail. Don't believe they have weekend release program so he can play.

NashvillePreds writes:

in response to CommodoreCapital:

Considering the UT football GPA, maybe Cam is dyslexic, and thought his name was on the computer.

You have the greatest 6-7 coach since Gerry Dinardo.

NashvillePreds writes:

in response to CommodoreCapital:

Considering the UT football GPA, maybe Cam is dyslexic, and thought his name was on the computer.

Also, I have a dyslexic friend whom attended Harvard. Unlike VU, Harvard actually justifies the cost of tuition.
The comment is very vandy of you though, so, at least you served the pretentious school on west end well in that regard.

voloffaith writes:

in response to BrassMonkey:

Dumb coach. Dumber players.

Sourpuss monkey with a a Hatfield-McCoy grudge he won't give up.....

superVOLman writes:

I am constantly surprised by the moronic posts by so-called Vols fans, although by now you would think it would be expected. First of all, one player stealing a laptop does not a coaching job doom. Dooley recruits the players and does his best to ensure they are given every opportunity to succeed. If they do something stupid, that's on them, not the coach, regardless of who that coach is. Unless there is evidence Dooley knew about it prior to the arrest, then this is all on Cam. And when the Vols have a successful season, which they will, all of you wannabe fans should just 'fess up and say "I was wrong, I should try thinking before I post in the future so that I do n't appear to be so ignorant". I'm just sayin'.

superVOLman writes:

in response to superVOLman:

I am constantly surprised by the moronic posts by so-called Vols fans, although by now you would think it would be expected. First of all, one player stealing a laptop does not a coaching job doom. Dooley recruits the players and does his best to ensure they are given every opportunity to succeed. If they do something stupid, that's on them, not the coach, regardless of who that coach is. Unless there is evidence Dooley knew about it prior to the arrest, then this is all on Cam. And when the Vols have a successful season, which they will, all of you wannabe fans should just 'fess up and say "I was wrong, I should try thinking before I post in the future so that I do n't appear to be so ignorant". I'm just sayin'.

Correction: don't appear

gomer writes:

in response to superVOLman:

I am constantly surprised by the moronic posts by so-called Vols fans, although by now you would think it would be expected. First of all, one player stealing a laptop does not a coaching job doom. Dooley recruits the players and does his best to ensure they are given every opportunity to succeed. If they do something stupid, that's on them, not the coach, regardless of who that coach is. Unless there is evidence Dooley knew about it prior to the arrest, then this is all on Cam. And when the Vols have a successful season, which they will, all of you wannabe fans should just 'fess up and say "I was wrong, I should try thinking before I post in the future so that I do n't appear to be so ignorant". I'm just sayin'.

stop standing up for this failure of a coach, he's a failure how much more proof do you disciples need? The quicker you morons realize this the quicker we can move on and get our beloved ut back to it's winning ways instead of a laughing stock across the nation.

etu_vol_fan writes:

Kid, you aren't that good. Put down the mac, do not pass go and don't collect $200. Just go away! Most of us aren't as blessed to be the athlete you are and what do you do? You throw it away on a stupid laptop? You deserve any punsishment you get.

CommodoreCapital writes:

in response to NashvillePreds:

You have the greatest 6-7 coach since Gerry Dinardo.

No, Tennessee does.

gomer writes:

in response to crappieking:

Dooley will be fired by the 6th game, so I guess it's fitting.

Dooley will be fired after his week 3.

notorange writes:

You've got mail.....i mean jail.

gomer writes:

in response to CommodoreCapital:

No, Tennessee does.

No, the great dooley couldn't even get 6 wins. But you better watch out he might get to that magic number 6 this year!

Volunista writes:

A senior team mate should beat the living hell out of Cameron to make sure he understands there are consequences for his inconsiderate, selfish behavior. It would also clearly convey the message to any other budding criminals.

johnlg00 writes:

WAY too bad for both Cameron and the team. If you looked up "unlimited athletic potential" in the dictionary, Cameron's picture would be there. It was ALL out there for him to seize with both hands, and instead he seized the belongings of another. He could have been an impact player leading a Vol resurgence and made himself a state-wide hero for life. He could have had the pro career he no doubt dreamed of his whole life. Of course, all those things may still happen; he is young and someone will likely give him another chance. I just hope it isn't at UT.

It is not possible for coaches to prevent young men in particular from being knuckleheads, but they can at least ensure they don't keep any around. That may send a message to future would-be knuckleheads that they might need to clean up their act if they want to play at UT. If Dooley is to build a PROGRAM, he must be absolutely clear about his policies on discipline and infractions and he must enforce them ruthlessly. As head coach, he has two main jobs--build and run the squad in an efficient, ethical, businesslike manner and field a consistently competitive team. He has not done so well on the latter, possibly because of mistakes and omissions in the former area, though it is hard to know that for sure, not having a direct pipeline into the locker room.

Call me old-school, but I think any coach who coddles promising but rule-breaking players hoping it will result in more wins deserves neither wins nor a job. Yeah, yeah, some of the best players in football history were rebels and rule-breakers, even criminals. There is something to be said for trying to redeem the lost souls. However, as long as college athletics has any connection to publicly-supported educational institutions, respect must be paid to the values and ideals of a civilized society, and those who can't embody those ideals should not be tolerated. There just has to be a line somewhere that CANNOT be crossed without dire consequences.

Rich_Is_Re-born writes:

in response to superVOLman:

I am constantly surprised by the moronic posts by so-called Vols fans, although by now you would think it would be expected. First of all, one player stealing a laptop does not a coaching job doom. Dooley recruits the players and does his best to ensure they are given every opportunity to succeed. If they do something stupid, that's on them, not the coach, regardless of who that coach is. Unless there is evidence Dooley knew about it prior to the arrest, then this is all on Cam. And when the Vols have a successful season, which they will, all of you wannabe fans should just 'fess up and say "I was wrong, I should try thinking before I post in the future so that I do n't appear to be so ignorant". I'm just sayin'.

Dooley swept it under the rug in an attempt to handle it "internally". Well that wasn't good enough for the folks who were stolen from. So they pressed charges. It's NOT Dooley's fault that Cam stole from people like and idiot. But how Dooley chooses to handle the situation IS on him. And it's glaringly obvious he was gonna look the other way. Thats not good.

volfanlostnbama writes:

clean house, get him out...already a precedent established this season with the ARK situation...just hope this one is not as deep as it turned out to be! They didn't flinch at cleaning house, CDD will show what kind of coach he is by his response...this will dictate my evaluation of where he is as a coach.

CLEMSONVOL716WASBANNED writes:

in response to AlpharettaVol:

This may be out of the university's hands. If he is convicted of a felony he may actually go to jail. Don't believe they have weekend release program so he can play.

Sure they have a weekend release program...Bobby Bowden and lil Urb' made their careers off of those types of programs.

ButchBall writes:

Opinion: I wouldn't kick him off the team automatically. Revoke scholarship for 1 year if guilty. Suspend play for the year. He should pay his own bills and resolve all financial and legal issues himself. If he is man enough to stay and fix his poopy mess, let him stay on the team and reinstate the scholarship after the year. Make him earn his scholarship back.

If he responds by leaving after being given a chance to fix his mistake and stay on the team, then he wasn't worth keeping anyway. He will just go poop on some other team if he won't even fix his mistake when given the opportunity.

As for this year, let Downs play. He'll do well. I don't even know that we would miss Cameron all that much this year.

For what it's worth. Of course, this is assuming that he did steal the laptop.

gc_scvol writes:

in response to johnlg00:

WAY too bad for both Cameron and the team. If you looked up "unlimited athletic potential" in the dictionary, Cameron's picture would be there. It was ALL out there for him to seize with both hands, and instead he seized the belongings of another. He could have been an impact player leading a Vol resurgence and made himself a state-wide hero for life. He could have had the pro career he no doubt dreamed of his whole life. Of course, all those things may still happen; he is young and someone will likely give him another chance. I just hope it isn't at UT.

It is not possible for coaches to prevent young men in particular from being knuckleheads, but they can at least ensure they don't keep any around. That may send a message to future would-be knuckleheads that they might need to clean up their act if they want to play at UT. If Dooley is to build a PROGRAM, he must be absolutely clear about his policies on discipline and infractions and he must enforce them ruthlessly. As head coach, he has two main jobs--build and run the squad in an efficient, ethical, businesslike manner and field a consistently competitive team. He has not done so well on the latter, possibly because of mistakes and omissions in the former area, though it is hard to know that for sure, not having a direct pipeline into the locker room.

Call me old-school, but I think any coach who coddles promising but rule-breaking players hoping it will result in more wins deserves neither wins nor a job. Yeah, yeah, some of the best players in football history were rebels and rule-breakers, even criminals. There is something to be said for trying to redeem the lost souls. However, as long as college athletics has any connection to publicly-supported educational institutions, respect must be paid to the values and ideals of a civilized society, and those who can't embody those ideals should not be tolerated. There just has to be a line somewhere that CANNOT be crossed without dire consequences.

"KNUCKLEHEADS" That word sounds all too familiar. Seems I've heard it used several times...on the radio, maybe...

jimr07 writes:

in response to BrassMonkey:

Dumb coach. Dumber players.

so what did dooley have to do with it..

ButchBall writes:

Why are some of you indicating that Dooley was hiding something or was going to "look the other way" here? Please offer facts, not a spew of totally baseless stupidity. Anybody?

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