USF backs off football team's Ybor ban

- Ybor City may not be off-limits to University of South Florida football players after all.

Coach Willie Taggart initially gave that directive to his team in the aftermath of the stabbing of a former player.

Elkino Watson, 23, was celebrating the team's win at the 'Orpheum' nightclub in Ybor Saturday night.

Witnesses say a fight started outside as the club was closing.  Watson was stabbed, along with 22-year old Desmond Horne.

Watson died; Horne survived with minor injuries.


Late Monday, USF's athletic director issued a statement insisting that the players were not, in fact, banned from the Ybor area:

"I would like to make clear USF Athletics high regard for Ybor City and its cherished and historical place in our Bay Area community and culture. Earlier today, our football coach spoke out of emotion and in reaction to the tragic loss of Elkino Watson, a member of our football program from 2011-2014. USF Athletics will continue to focus on reinforcing its policy of student-athletes making smart decisions where ever they may be, looking out for one another, and walking away from any situation that appears threatening. They will not be banned from visiting any areas of our beautiful city."


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