Piscataway, NJ (SportsNetwork.com) - Rutgers dismissed quarterback Philip Nelson from its football team Tuesday morning, one day after he was charged with first- and third-degree assault for his role in an incident over the weekend that left a 24-year-old man near death.
"The Rutgers football family's thoughts and prayers are with Isaac Kolstad and his family," said Rutgers coach Kyle Flood in a statement.
Nelson has been charged with first-degree assault causing great bodily harm and third-degree assault causing substantial bodily harm, according to a criminal complaint obtained and posted online by NJ.com.
According to the website, police say Nelson, 20, was upset over a bouncer flirting with his girlfriend at a bar in downtown Mankato, Minnesota.
The men had a "heated" verbal exchange outside the bar and the bouncer, identified as former Minnesota State-Mankato football player Isaac Kolstad, hit Nelson in the back with a punch, forcing the quarterback to the ground, according to an officer who viewed surveillance footage of the incident.
After an unidentified male ran after Kolstad and punched him in the head/face, Kolstad fell back and hit his head on the pavement. Nelson then allegedly kicked Kolstad in the left side of the head.
Nelson was arrested later. Police said an officer on the scene observed Nelson with bloodshot eyes and smelled an odor of alcohol on his breath. Nelson was asked if he remembered kicking Kolstad in the head and he said no.
Nelson appeared in court on Monday, where a judge set bail at $20,000. Nelson posted bail Monday evening and left Blue Earth County Jail with a towel covering his head.
Kolstad was in critical condition at the Mayo Clinic Health System and "fighting for his life," according to a post on CaringBridge.com written by his father.
Nelson passed for 2,179 yards and 17 touchdowns in 18 games for Minnesota over the past two seasons and transferred to Rutgers in January.
The 6-foot-2, 215-pound sophomore was scheduled to sit out a year before playing for Rutgers due to transfer rules.