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Isi Etute to Play for Iowa Community College After Not-Guilty Verdict in Murder Case

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured Columnist IVJuly 25, 2022

David J. Griffin/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

A lawyer for Isi Etute said the former Virginia Tech linebacker, who was found not guilty of murder in May, will transfer to and play for Iowa Western Community College during the 2022 season.

Attorney James Turk said Monday that Division I schools were not lining up to accept the transfer because he was previously under trial for murder, per David M. Hale of ESPN.

Hale noted Etute was charged with murder in the 2021 beating death of Jerry Smith. The linebacker was catfished by Smith, who portrayed himself as a woman online, and received oral sex and $50 upon their first encounter.

Etute testified during his trial that he planned on determining whether Smith was a man during their second encounter and kicked and punched him multiple times before leaving the apartment when he did. The former Hokie said he feared for his life because Smith reached toward a mattress, and police later discovered a knife hidden between the mattress and box spring.

A Virginia jury ruled the self-defense argument was plausible when it found Etute not guilty in May.

He isn't the only former Virginia Tech player who testified at the trial to leave the ACC program.

Hale noted Jordan Brunson transferred to Miami (Ohio), Jalen Hampton transferred to Elon and Da'Shawn Elder is in the transfer portal. Brunson and Hampton accompanied Smith to the apartment but never entered during the second and deadly encounter, while Elder went to the apartment but left before any sexual acts occurred during the first encounter.

Etute was part of Virginia Tech's 2021 recruiting class, and he was suspended from the team when he was charged.

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