Former ASU football player pleads not guilty to sexual assault charges

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Andres Rafael Garcia By Jennifer Thomas Andres Rafael Garcia By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX (AP) -- A former Arizona State University football player arrested in connection with a sexual assault has pleaded not guilty.

Maricopa County prosecutors say 22-year-old Andres Rafael Garcia entered his plea Monday. His next scheduled court date is Aug. 7.

Garcia was arrested on June 9 on suspicion of two counts of sexual assault and one count of assault/domestic violence.

Tempe police say Garcia got involved in an argument with a 21-year-old woman he knew and it allegedly escalated into a physical assault.

Garcia is accused of shoving the woman backward into a wall, knocking her unconscious. Authorities say he then allegedly sexually assaulted the woman.

ASU officials announced June 11 that Garcia had been dismissed from the football team. He joined the Sun Devils last season as a non-scholarship defensive back.