Long was arrested on a DUI charge in Charlottesville, Va., in January 2009 and spent a brief time in a rehab program after bouncing out of Florida State, where he had gone to play baseball.
General manager Phil Emery said he would be more concerned about Long’s lack of major college experience – he played in only 11 games at Oregon – if it wasn’t for his strong character.
“I am not concerned,” Emery said. “All of us have fallen in life at one point or another and the important thing is do we get up and do we move forward? Do we try to get ourselves better and not only get ourselves better but get those around us better. That is what this young man has done.
“He was a team leader at Oregon. He was there one fall and they petitioned to bring him back because of his leadership. They felt that he was going to be the guy on the team to lead this team. So, that is why the coaches requested to get another year. He didn’t get it. So he came out in the draft.”