I had my eye on this guy in the Nfl Draft. I couldn't believe it when I heard it on the radio. Thankfully, it seems as if he can recover from this. He's very lucky he's not dead.
Pasquarelli: Rating the DBs
Monday, April 21, 2003
Weathersby: I was in wrong place at wrong time
By Len Pasquarelli
The draft status of cornerback prospect Dennis Weathersby has been rendered uncertain, ESPN.com has learned, after the former Oregon State star was shot Sunday evening in his hometown of Duarte, Calif., a Los Angeles suburb.
While the injuries inflicted in the shooting are not life-threatening, and Weathersby is expected to be released from the hospital by Wednesday, it could be 6-8 weeks until the cornerback is cleared to resume any football-related activities. The fact he will probably miss rookie orientation as well as a mini-camp might drop him from his consensus second-round status.
The positive news, on a relative basis, is that Weathersby will not require surgery for any of his injuries.
Weathersby was shot in the back, below the lungs, with the bullet passing through his stomach, and entering his forearm. Contrary to an earlier report by ESPN.com, the bullet did not exit his arm, is still lodged there, but will not be removed.
Teams that were considering Weathersby in the weekend draft, certainly will want a detailed analysis of his physical condition.
"I was in the wrong place at the wrong time, but I feel fine," Weathersby said. "I'm lucky. The Lord has a reason for everything and this must be a part of his plan for me."
Weathersby was said to be climbing into a car with what spokesman Steve Caric called "a casual acquaintance," and on his way to the airport to pick up a friend who was flying in to join him for draft festivities, at the time of the attack.
Police in Los Angeles are investigating the incident and hope, at some point on Monday, to have a better understanding of exactly what transpired. The attack occurred in an area where gang activity is said to be high.
Deputy Harry Drucker of the Los Angeles Police, said the incident is being treated as gang-related, but Weathersby's agent, Gary Uberstine said his client has not been involved in gang activities.
"It is being investigated as a gang incident. There is a gang presence in the area and a rivalry there,'' Drucker told The AP on Monday.
Two league teams contacted by ESPN.com said they had no reports of past gang activity by the player, who was an academic All-American at Oregon State.
There have been no arrests yet in the incident.
Last week, in an interview with ESPN.com, Weathersby spoke at length about the tough neighborhood in which he was raised. Some teams felt that Weathersby had an attitude problem, and the corner explained might be in part a function of his boyhood environment.
"Maybe it's because of my upbringing or something," Weathersby said. "I'm just not close to a lot of people. I pretty much keep to myself. It's still hard for me to trust people real easily. So maybe some teams see that as a problem. I'm just not the kind of person who opens up quickly, that's all."
Weathersby, 22, was a four-year starter at Oregon State, appearing in 48 games, and had five interceptions and 56 passes defensed in his career.
He was regarded by most teams as a likely second-round choice, but a few clubs had him rated a first-round possibility.
"First and foremost, we are relieved that Dennis is OK," Uberstine said. "This is a tragic event and our thoughts and prayers are obviously with Dennis and his family. From a football standpoint, this will not jeopardize his career in any way. After speaking with his doctors, we are expecting a complete and speedy recovery."
Len Pasquarelli is a senior writer for ESPN.com. Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.
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