CLEMSON Rising sophomore linebacker Lateek Townsend was suspended for the first four games of last season by the NCAA due to an improper benefit he received from a high school coach, Clemson spokesperson Tim Bourret told reporters after football practice Wednesday.

Bourret said the high school coach had no ties to Clemson. The suspension is one reason why Townsend did not redshirt last season, as the suspension would have rolled over to 2012.

Townsend was rated as a four-star linebacker by Rivals.com in 2011.