Oregon Ducks Player Cited Again, Car Impounded

October 26, 2011

Oregon cornerback Cliff Harris was suspended Monday after he was pulled over for several infractions, including driving on a suspended license and driving without insurance.

In a statement released by the school, Ducks coach Chip Kelly suspended Harris pending further review and he will not be able to take part in any football-related activities.

Eugene police said that Harris was stopped on a city street Monday afternoon after an officer noted he wasn’t wearing a seatbelt, for which he was also cited.

He faces fines in excess of $952. The car he was driving, which police say belongs to a relative, was impounded.

Harris, an All-American who broke up 23 passes and averaged 18.8 yards per punt return last season, was also ticketed in June by Oregon State Police for driving 118 mph on Interstate 5 on a suspended license.

Harris, who was driving a rented car he says was lent to him by a university employee, was suspended indefinitely after the incident by Kelly and did not play in Oregon’s season-opening loss to LSU at Cowboys Stadium.

He was allowed to practice with the team during that earlier suspension and was reinstated just before Oregon’s 69-20 victory over Nevada on Sept. 10.

Harris’ family paid the $1,620 in fines for the citations. The university compliance office was looking into whether NCAA rules were broken when the school employee allowed him to use the rental car.

Later, a dashboard video released by the Oregon State Police revealed that Oregon quarterback Darron Thomas was a passenger in the rental car.

Harris has nine tackles in six games this season for the No. 7 Ducks (6-1, 4-0 Pac-12.) He also has an interception and nine punt returns for 68 yards.

In Oregon’s 45-2 victory over Colorado last weekend, the Buffaloes tackled Harris on a punt return in the end zone for a safety. He was also flagged before the game started for taunting, which allowed Colorado to kick off from the 45 to start the game.

As a sophomore last season, Harris set an Oregon record with four punt returns for touchdowns. He became known not just for his explosive speed, but for his colorful quotes: He coined the term “The Natty” to describe the BCS national championship game.

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