Dec. 21, 2004
SportsLine.com wire reports

AUSTIN -- Texas reserve running back Erik Hardeman, who had not played this season because of academic problems, has been suspended indefinitely from the team after a felony arrest on a drug charge.

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Police say they found about 20 grams of cocaine in a car Hardeman was riding in last week.

According to Austin police, Hardeman was charged with felony possession of a controlled substance on Dec. 14 and a misdemeanor marijuana possession charge after the car was pulled over on a traffic stop.

The second degree felony charge carries a penalty of two to 20 years in prison.

Through a spokesman, coach Mack Brown said Hardeman was suspended indefinitely "pending the outcome of the legal process." Hardeman had not been scheduled to travel with the No. 6 Longhorns for their Rose Bowl matchup with No. 13 Michigan on Jan. 1.

The arrest affidavit on the felony charge was not immediately available at the Travis County clerk's office. But according to the arrest affidavit filed on the misdemeanor, police smelled marijuana in the car and found less than an ounce on Hardeman. They also said they found "several baggies" full of white powder on the floorboard of the rear passenger seat where Hardeman was riding.

Police said tests showed the powder was cocaine.

Police also said Hardeman, 19, was carrying $3,774 in cash. He was arrested and released after posting bail of $15,000 on the felony charge and $500 on the misdemeanor.

Court records on the misdemeanor charge showed Hardeman requested a court-appointed attorney but one had not been provided by Monday afternoon.

Two other men in the car, passenger Christopher Felkner and driver David Manuel Childress, also were arrested and have since been released from jail.

Hardeman is a redshirt freshman from Pflugerville who signed with Texas in 2003. He was allowed to practice this season but was not academically eligible to play. Hardeman had not worked out with the Longhorns for several weeks, said team spokesman John Bianco.

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