• Backed by former teammate, Dalton defends his arrest in Columbia

  • Former Blue Springs South High School quarterback Blaine Dalton is defending his arrest in Columbia late Thursday, and a former high school teammate backed his claim late Saturday night.

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  • Former Blue Springs South High School quarterback Blaine Dalton is defending his arrest in Columbia late Thursday, and a former high school teammate backed his claim late Saturday night.
    “I wasn’t intoxicated, and I wasn’t selling pills,” Dalton, the former Jaguars quarterback who had enrolled at the University of Missouri early to battle for the job as Mizzou's starting quarterback, told The Examiner Saturday.
    Dalton was arrested around 11 p.m. Thursday by Columbia police near the intersection of Providence Road and Burnam Avenue.
    Dalton said he was handcuffed and placed in the officer’s car when they found a bottle containing 10 pills of Hydrocodone, a prescription pain killer, and an unopened can of beer.
    “They looked in my car and found an unopened beer in the glove compartment,” Dalton said. “It was warm. I don’t know how long it had been in there. It wasn’t cold and it wasn’t open, and I wasn’t drunk or anything like that.”
    Dalton said a police officer then brought the prescription bottle to Dalton and asked him, “Who’s Wilson?”
    Wilson is Dalton’s former Blue Springs South teammate Zach Wilson, an offensive lineman who started three years with the Jaguars and then went to Northwest Missouri State University on a football scholarship before giving up the sport last season.
    Wilson’s name was on the prescription bottle. The pills were prescribed by a doctor after Wilson had shoulder surgery last September.
    Wilson said he left them in Dalton’s car after visiting his friend before a Missouri spring scrimmage.
    “They’re mine,” Wilson said late Saturday night. “I don’t remember the exact date I went to MU to see Blaine, but I had on some shorts with no pockets and I threw the pills in his glove compartment.
    “When he called me and told me what happened, I couldn’t believe it. People are asking why I left the pills there and didn’t need them. I had shoulder surgery last September, and the pills I left in his car weren’t strong enough.
    “I got a stronger dose. I didn’t even remember they were in his glove compartment until Blaine called me after it all came down.”
    The Columbia Tribune reported Dalton was arrested on suspicion of felony possession of a controlled substance, minor in possession of alcohol, possession of false identification and three traffic charges, including a lane violation and failure to provide insurance.
    The officer found 10 pills of Hydrocodone, a prescription painkiller, and alcohol in Dalton's vehicle, Deputy Chief Tom Dresner told the Tribune. After pulling over the car, officers smelled marijuana inside the vehicle and a police canine also detected the possible presence of drugs prompting a search, Columbia police Lt. Scott Young said. A passenger was in the car at the time of the traffic stop but was not arrested, Young said.
    “As far as I know, he was cooperative with officers,” Young said of Dalton to the Tribune.
    Under state law, the drug offense is considered a Class C felony punishable upon conviction of a maximum of seven years in prison. The Tribune reported he was released after posting $4,800 bond, but Dalton said it was a $5,000 bond.
    “It was $4,500 for the (controlled substance) pills and $500 for the other things,” Dalton said. “I didn’t even know the pills or the beer were in my glove compartment. I threw a bunch of papers and stuff in there and didn’t know they were there.”
    Dalton said he talked with Missouri football head coach Gary Pinkel after his arrest, but said the conversation was private.
    “I am suspended,” Dalton said. “But that’s all I can say right now.”
    MU athletic department spokesman Chad Moller told the Tribune Friday that it is standard team policy after an arrest to suspend a player. If Dalton is charged with a felony crime, he cannot be reinstated to the team until the matter is resolved, per an MU athletic department policy adopted in 2004.
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    Dalton led the Blue Springs South football team to a Class 6 state championship his sophomore year. The Jaguars lost to eventual state champion Rockhurst in the district championship game of his junior year and last year the Jaguars lost to Hazelwood Central in the Class 6 state title game.
    Dalton was The Examiner’s Player of the Year in 2008 and won the Simone Award, which goes to the outstanding prep football player in the Kansas City metro area. He threw for 65 touchdowns and passed for more than 5,000 yards in his career at South.
    In three spring scrimmages at MU, Dalton completed 21 of 44 passes for 193 yards and an interception while competing with Blaine Gabbert, Jimmy Costello and Ashton Glaser for the starting quarterback job with the Tigers. Throughout the five weeks of practice, Dalton mostly ran the No. 3 offense, sharing snaps with his fellow freshman, Glaser, who also enrolled a semester early.
    Dalton finished spring practice listed as the No. 3 quarterback on the depth chart behind Gabbert and Costello.
    When this is all over, I’ll have a lot more to say,” said Dalton, who is spending the weekend with longtime friends and former Jaguar teammates in Blue Springs. “A lot of people want me to mess up. I know right now, I’ve let a lot of people down, but the people I’m really close to know what happened, and I know something positive will come from all of this.”
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