Wisconsin's Michael Bennett Arrested

Monday, February 12th 2001, 12:00 am

By: News On 6

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Michael Bennett, one of the nation's best running backs last season, was arrested at his apartment building early Monday after knocking in a woman's door, police said.

The former Wisconsin player was being held on three charges, including a felony count of criminal intimidation of a victim.

He also was being held on misdemeanor charges of criminal damage to property and disorderly conduct, according to records at the Dane County jail.

The arrest occurred after a dispute between Bennett and the 19-year-old female student, who live in the same building but on separate floors, police spokesman Benjamin Vanden Belt said.

The 22-year-old running back called the woman several times and then damaged the woman's door but was unable to enter the apartment, the spokesman said.

``The people in the apartment could not get out and nobody could get in. It took some people pulling back and forth to get the door open,'' Vanden Belt said.

Vanden Belt said police were still trying to find out what prompted the argument, but it did not appear to be a long-standing dispute.

Bennett said last month he would forgo his senior year to enter the NFL draft. He began last season as an unknown commodity, trying to replace Heisman Trophy winner Ron Dayne.

But the four-time Big Ten sprint champion ran for 1,598 yards — third best in the nation — and 10 touchdowns in 10 games.

NFL scouts and general managers are enamored with Bennett's speed and several draft publications project the 5-foot-10, 205-pound tailback as a first-round pick.

In announcing he would turn pro, Bennett acknowledged he could use another year in college to work on his game. But he was apparently concerned he couldn't duplicate his junior season because the Badgers must replace three seniors on the offensive line.

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