WESTWOOD—UCLA’s football program found itself under the national spotlight following Monday’s incident which resulted in the arrest of rap icon Sean “Diddy” Combs.
Combs, whose son Justin is a reserve defensive back for the Bruins. Justin’s father has been seen at many of the team’s practices.
The rap mogul is a well-known public figure and has an estimated net worth of $700 million. His son is entering his third year with the program.
The younger Combs, struggling to push through sprint drills, caught the eye of Sal Alossi, drawing a handful of audible comments from the strength and conditioning coach.
The comments, which several unidentified sources have labeled as “demeaning” and “berating” of the red-shirt sophomore, reportedly made reference to his celebrity father.
In response to the comments, sources say Justin Combs shook his head, a display of negative body language that Alossi took exception to.
With his father watching from the sidelines, Alossi dismissed the struggling player from the field, not only for the duration of the conditioning session, but for the remainder of the summer.
Though this particular version of events has been corroborated by a handful of eyewitnesses, authorities have not disclosed exact details of what caused the altercation, where Diddy is facing multiple criminal charges.
The incident, taking place outside Alossi’s office in the the school’s Acosta Athletic Complex, occurred after Justin Combs and his father approached the coach’s office to confront him concerning his dismissal.
At this point, all that has been confirmed is that the incident resulted in the rapper’s arrest on three counts of assault with a deadly weapon, one count of battery, and one count of making terrorist threats.
One version of events states that following a heated argument with Alossi, the elder Combs allegedly swung a kettle bell at an unidentified person.
Combs’ legal counsel has stated that he was acting in self defense, that after he was ordered to leave the building, Combs found himself surrounded by four to five bystanders.
Fearing for his safety, the rapper grabbed the kettle bell, the nearest possible instrument of self-defense, swinging it but not hurting anyone present.
“What we can say now is that any actions taken by Mr. Combs were solely defensive in nature to protect himself and his son,” said a statement issued on the rapper’s behalf.
At this point, victim names as well as details of the investigation have not been made public. According to reports, it is known that a security camera in the eight room beyond Alossi’s office captured at least part of Monday afternoon’s altercation.
No decision has been made concerning Justin Combs’ future at UCLA. TMZ reports that three high profile players expressed support of the redshirt sophomore, who they characterized as a positive friend and teammate.
“Justin works hard everyday,” one player told TMZ. “We go out on our own together and work on our footwork and lift weights outside of practice. I feel the coaches should let him back on the team. I know we want him back.”
Since the incident, Combs has not been spotted with the team or on the school’s campus.