Josiah Turner, Anthony Stover, Lazeric Jones

Josiah Turner will never suit up for SMU; he’s going pro

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The Josiah Turner experiment came to a very quick end at SMU.

According to a report Jeff Eisenberg of Yahoo! Sports, Turner has decided to turn pro instead of continuing his collegiate career.

“I had to step back and reevaluate what my main goal and my dream was,” Turner told Eisenberg. “My dream is to be a professional athlete in the NBA and I think this is what’s going to bring me closer to it. In college, you get your degree and everything, but going pro is getting me closer to my dream and what I want to do in life.”

The move ends what was a tumultuous college career. Turner, who came into school with somewhat of a reputation, was suspended in December for a game, benched for another and eventually found himself kicked off of the team. Things hit rock bottom for Turner, who was supposed to be the next great to come out of Point Guard U, when he was arrested for extreme DUI in April.

Turner admitted that drugs and alcohol were a big issue for him, but that the arrest was a turning point. Hopefully it was, because Turner has too much ability to let it go to waste.

Frankly, turning professional may be the best move for Turner’s career. If a kid has issues with focus and dedication off the court, the last thing you want to do is to take basketball away from him. Would he have made it through an entire summer, an entire school year as a redshirt and then a whole ‘nother summer without getting in trouble?

Turner doesn’t need an education as much as he needs to grow up, and maybe the way to do that is to send him off to the D-League, where he’ll make somewhere between $12,000 and $25,500 while playing 50 games in places like Erie, Sioux Falls and Boise.

To be honest, more than anything, this move makes me wonder just how long Larry Brown is going to stay at SMU. Turner was the most talented player that he had brought in. Does he really want to spend a couple years there getting pasted by teams in the Big East?

It also makes me wonder about how Jeremiah Samarrippas is feeling right about now. Don’t recognize the name? He was the guy that started at the point as a freshman and a sophomore, even being named team captain, that was cut by Brown to make room for Turner.

You ain’t at Kansas anymore, Larry.

Rob Dauster is the editor of the college basketball website Ballin’ is a Habit. You can find him on twitter @robdauster.

Henry Ellenson wins Marquette Madness dunk contest

Steve Wojciechowski
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Marquette freshman forward Henry Ellenson won the Marquette Madness slam dunk contest on Friday night with a between the legs dunk.

The 6-foot-10 Ellenson, the top recruit in Steve Wojciechowski’s freshmen class, defeated sophomore Sandy Cohen, fellow freshman Sacar Anim and Wally Ellenson, his older brother.

Ellenson joins the Golden Eagles as the No. 11 overall recruit in the Class of 2015.

Bill Self signs $10,000 check for KU student


Late Night in the Phog is typically a night to remember for Kansas fans. For Kansas student Jerrod Martin Castro, Friday night’s event is one he won’t forget.

Castro, a sophomore, was selected as a contestant for a $10,000 giveaway. The only thing standing in the way of a big payday was a half-court shot. Brennan Bechard, the Kansas director of basketball operations, attempted the long-distance shot and hit nothing but net.

Kansas head coach Bill Self signed a $10,000 check on the spot.