Following his second arrest in less than three months, freshman Justin Watkins announced Friday his intention to seek a release from his scholarship and leave the University of Florida.
I will be leaving the university of Florida to better my opportunities.
— justin watkins (@laamar_05) July 27, 2018
The decision ends the UF career of the Gators’ top rated 2018 signee before it could begin.
Watkins, 19, signed with the Gators on National Signing Day in February, but found himself arrested for trespassing in May after a domestic dispute with a female victim.
Watkins was arrested once again Tuesday after a female victim with whom he was in a relationship went to the University of Florida police department alleging Watkins choked, beat and assaulted her by throwing a hair brush and can of hair grease. He is facing four charges that include false imprisonment/kidnapping and domestic battery by strangulation. Both are third-degree felonies.
UF coach Dan Mullen suspended Watkins indefinitely from all team activities pending the outcome of the investigation.
He was released from the Alachua County jail Wednesday night on $40,000 bond.
Watkins, a former four-star prospect out of East Ridge High in Clermont, enrolled at Florida in June for the Summer B semester and was expected to contribute as a cornerback and on special teams.