Toledo native Ballard removed from Rockets football teamWritten by Mike Bauman | | firstname.lastname@example.org
On May 25, University of Toledo head football coach Tim Beckman announced that senior Isaiah Ballard had been removed from the team “for violation of team policies.” Ballard is the second Rocket football player this week to be kicked off the team due to assault charges. Junior Damien McIntosh was charged with felonious assault on May 20.
“Isaiah Ballard has been permanently removed from our football program,” Beckman said in a statement released through Toledo Associate Athletic Director of Media Relations Paul Helgren. “We have policies on our team for personal conduct that our players must adhere to. Any and all players must adhere to these policies.”
According to records Toledo Free Press obtained from Toledo Municipal Clerk of Court, Ballard was charged with felonious assault with the victim seriously harmed. The complaint — filed on May 19 — stated that “Isaiah L. Ballard did punch Carlos Ruiz several times in the face causing Medical treatment at Toledo Hospital for a mandible fracture.”
The warrant was returned on May 24, and Ballard’s arraignment took place on the morning of May 25, where he appeared with Attorney Samuel Kaplan. Ballard’s bond was set at that time, and Thomas Lake posted $1,500 cash of the $15,000 bond. His preliminary hearing is scheduled for July 7 at 9 a.m. in court room No. 3.
The incident was not Ballard’s first run-in with the law. In addition to his pending felonious assault charge, Ballard has eight priors on his record dating back to Sept. 2007, of which he was found guilty on seven and dismissed on the other. Of his eight priors, Ballard was found guilty on four of five traffic charges (operation of vehicle at stop signs, operating a vehicle without seatbelt, flashing traffic signals; red stop light, driving without license), while the other three were disorderly conduct; engaging in fight/threaten, loitering; obstructing free passage of pedestrians or vehicles and failure to disperse, all of which he was found guilty.
A 2008 graduate of Rogers High School, Ballard was the Toledo City League Co-Player of the Year as a senior, earning first-team all-conference, first-team all-district and first-team Division II All-Ohio honors. Ballard started all 13 games for Toledo last season, replacing Dallas Cowboys’ safety Barry Church at the “star” spot on the Rockets’ defense, which is a hybrid position of linebacker and safety. He finished third on the team with 83 tackles to go along with two interceptions and five pass breakups in 2010.
Beckman did not respond to a phone call and voicemail for further comment on this story.