University of Washington

UW indefinitely suspends linebacker Azeem Victor for DUI arrest

Washington linebacker Azeem Victor has been suspended indefinitely after being arrested on Sunday.
Washington linebacker Azeem Victor has been suspended indefinitely after being arrested on Sunday. jbessex@gateline.com

Washington linebacker Azeem Victor was indefinitely suspended by Huskies coach Chris Petersen, the school announced Wednesday.

Victor was arrested early Sunday morning but no further details were given by the university, according to a release.

He was charged with driving under the influence and was processed at the King County Jail, according to jail records. He was later released on a $1,000 bond.

“We take these matters very seriously, and have suspended Azeem from our team indefinitely as we continue to gather details about this incident,” Petersen said in the release.

The university said Petersen nor any other UW athletic official will provide further comment on Victor’s suspension.

Victor was selected as a preseason All-American middle linebacker. However, his senior season has not gone smoothly.

He was handed a one-game suspension because of an undisclosed team-rule violation to start the season. Victor did not disclose what he was suspended for.

“You just have to learn from your experiences and everything, and keep moving forward,” said Victor after missing the season-opener at Rutgers.

Victor has also fallen down UW’s depth chart with the emergence of junior Ben Burr-Kirven, who leads the team with 64 tackles.

Finding a spot for Victor only grew harder considering the Huskies were the No. 1 defense in college football as of a week ago. Petersen told reporters last week Victor would be moved to defensive end where he would be used as an edge rusher.

“We know he can play linebacker, so we’re trying to get our best guys on the field in terms of certain packages,” Petersen said earlier this season.

Victor, who has 30 tackles this season, recorded one sack in UW’s 30-22 loss last Friday at Stanford. He had his best game of the season at Colorado, notching 10 tackles and a sack in the UW’s 37-10 win over the Buffaloes.

Rated by Rivals as a three-star recruit, Victor was the No. 59 outside linebacker in the nation when he signed in 2013 with the Huskies.

He took a redshirt in 2013 and was named the team’s special teams scout squad’s most valuable player.

In 2014, he appeared in 12 games and finished the year with five tackles.

A year later, Victor broke out. He led the Huskies with 95 tackles and his nine tackles for loss were third on the team. Victor also picked up six pass deflections, which was second on the team.

He finished 10th in the Pac-12 in tackles, was an honorable mention All-Pac-12 selection while and helping the Huskies go 7-6 which ended with a win over Southern Mississippi in the Heart of Dallas Bowl.

Victor was one of UW’s biggest stars in 2016 when the Huskies reached the College Football Playoffs. He was becoming one of the nation’s premier linebackers until he suffered a season-ending leg injury.

He played in 10 games, finished second on the team with 68 tackles and led the Huskies with five fumble recoveries. Victor’s year was cut short when he missed the final four games after breaking his leg against Southern California.

Ryan S. Clark: @ryan_s_clark

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