NFL draft: Cowboys pick OT Josh Ball, who was accused of dating violence and suspended from Florida State

Frank Schwab
·2-min read

The Dallas Cowboys can't say no to adding players with spotty off-field histories. 

The latest player with a troubling past is offensive lineman Josh Ball, a fourth-round pick. Ball started his college career as a highly-recruited player and a starter for Florida State in 2017. In 2018 he was suspended by Florida State after an accusation of multiple violent acts against his girlfriend. 

In 2018, a sworn petition by Ball's ex-girlfriend claimed Ball is a “violent person” and detailed 11 incidents of violence against her and others throughout their 18-month relationship. He was accused of slapping her, and in another incident, accused of throwing her to the floor. In another incident, Ball was accused of grabbing and shoving her. Ball's ex-girlfriend sought a protective order and a joint resolution ordering Ball to stay away from her Tallahassee residence and other places she frequents. Ball was not charged with any crimes. 

Ball continued his college career at Marshall after a stop at Butler Community College (Kansas), the Cowboys picked him Saturday, and he didn't want to talk about the accusations when he spoke to the media. 

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Ball is far from the first player the Cowboys have added that has off-field questions. He's not even the first in this draft. 

First-round pick Micah Parsons was accused in a civil lawsuit of participating in hazing incidents at Penn State. Second-round pick Kelvin Joseph was suspended by LSU before the 2019 Fiesta Bowl for violating team rules, and he transferred to Kentucky. 

Marshall offensive lineman Josh Ball (79) is escorted to the sideline by an official after being ejected during the fourth quarter of the 2020 Conference USA championship game. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Marshall offensive lineman Josh Ball (79) is escorted to the sideline by an official after being ejected during the fourth quarter of the 2020 Conference USA championship game. (Photo by Frank Jansky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

Those aren't as serious as the things Ball was accused of. 

The Cowboys are notoriously one of the NFL teams that will give any player — the ones good enough to help them on the field anyway — second and third chances despite some serious allegations and incidents in their past. It's not going to change, either. 

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