Junior defensive back K.J. Gray and sophomore linebacker Brendan DeVera have been dismissed from the Rutgers football program for violating team rules, a person with knowledge of the situation told NJ Advance Media on Wednesday morning.
Gray and DeVera were expected to play key roles on both defense and special teams for the Scarlet Knights this season.
Gray, a Newark native who played at St. Peter’s Prep in Jersey City, started four of the 10 games he played in as a sophomore last season. As a freshman in 2016, he played in 10 games as a reserve safety and on special teams, tallying 15 tackles, two fumble recoveries and an interception.
The 6-1, 205-pounder was expected to start alongside Saquan Hampton after leading the secondary with 58 tackles last fall.
DeVera, a Monticello, N.Y., native who starred at Wayne Hills High School, played in 11 games as a true freshman last fall. In addition to serving as a backup linebacker after moving from fullback during training camp, the 6-1, 242-pounder played on several special teams units and finished the season with two tackles.
DeVera’s younger brother, Tyler, is currently committed to play at Rutgers. A standout tight end entering his senior season at Bergen Catholic, Tyler DeVera pledged to Rutgers on June 21, five days after receiving his scholarship offer.
The specifics of their violations aren’t immediately known, and Rutgers coach Chris Ash wasn’t available for comment.
Their dismissals bring to five the number of players who have been booted by Ash for what school officials termed “violations of team rules” over the last 15 months.