Report: Vanderbilt football assistant coach arrested for DUI

UPDATED (3 p.m.): Vanderbilt confirmed defensive line coach Vavae Tata is suspended indefinitely following his arrest Sunday for DUI and a related charge.

The official statement from the university:

Based upon information received Tuesday, Vanderbilt assistant coach Vavae Tata has been suspended indefinitely by Head Football Coach Derek Mason stemming from an incident that occurred Feb. 16 in Nashville. Vanderbilt University will continue its investigation into the matter.

ORIGINAL REPORT: Vanderbilt assistant football coach Vavae Tata was arrested Sunday and charged with driving under the influence and leaving the scene of an accident with property damage, according to a Tennessean report Tuesday.

According to the [police] report, Tata, 37, struck two parked vehicles on West End Avenue and fled the scene on foot in an attempt to avoid police. He was located several blocks away and admitted to operating the crashed vehicle. He smelled of alcohol, was unsteady on his feet and had bloodshot and watery eyes.

Tata admitted to consuming a couple of beers at a downtown bar and, during a field sobriety test, had a hard time keeping his balance. “The one leg stand had to be stopped because the suspect could not keep his balance and the risk of him falling over and injuring himself was high,” the report stated.

Tata, the defensive line coach, was a defensive assistant last season at Stanford under first-year Vanderbilt coach Derek Mason. He also had jobs at UCLA, Pitt and San Jose State.