North Carolina freshman cornerback Michael Hughes is not currently on the football team because of “personal reasons,” team spokesman Kevin Best said.
Hughes' longterm status with the team is unclear. He is still enrolled in school, but it's unknown whether he'll rejoin the team in time for the start of spring practice, which begins later this month.
Hughes showed promise during his freshman season but part of it was marred by his involvement in a fight at a UNC fraternity that resulted in misdemeanor assault charges for Hughes and M.J. Stewart, another UNC cornerback.
Both players served two-game suspensions. The prosecution of that case has been deferred, a court clerk said on Monday, and Hughes' next court date in that case is not until February 2017. It wasn't immediately clear on Monday whether Hughes faces additional legal trouble.
Hughes played in 12 games last season. He finished his freshman season with 12 tackles and broke up three passes.