Two former University of South Carolina football players expected to be selected in May’s NFL draft are wanted for questioning by the NYPD after a man was bashed over the head with a hookah water pipe at a Manhattan nightclub, according to published reports.
Former Gamecocks defensive standouts Victor Hampton and Kelcy Quarles were in the VIP section of the Greenhouse Nightclub in the West Village Friday when a man was assaulted, the Daily News reports.
The paper reports that the man fell to the ground after being walloped with the pipe at the Varick Street club. Then, two men beat him so severely that he required surgery for extensive facial injuries.
Investigators are working to identify the assailants, the paper reports. Officers are looking to talk to Quarles and Hampton as potential witnesses.
Tuesday, Quarles told The State newspaper in Columbia, S.C., that he was in New York City last week but never went to the nightclub and wasn't involved in the brawl.
“I’m (mad) about it because it’s going to hurt my draft status,” Quarles told the newspaper. “I’m about to do everything I possibly can to get my name cleared because it’s not fair. I had nothing to do with this.”
Hampton didn’t comment to The State.
Quarles, a defensive tackle, and Hampton, a cornerback, were both in New York City for a draft-related photo shoot, The State reports. Both players are expected to be picked in the NFL draft’s middle rounds.
About 50 minutes after the attack, a third former South Carolina player – defensive end Chaz Sutton – was stabbed in the shoulder after leaving the club, the Daily News reports. The stabbing doesn’t appear to be connected to the beating, and Sutton wasn’t severely injured.
Sutton is expected to be a late-round draft pick or an undrafted free agent.