APTOPIX CIT Coastal Carolina Old Dominion Basketball

Pickup hoops injury sidelines Coastal Carolina frosh

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Under Cliff Ellis, the Coastal Carolina Chanticleers have become a good team. Which is a nice thing to be, but in a one-bid conference, it’s less than satisfying. The goal is to not only win the Big South regular season crown, but carry momentum into the league tournament, earning the Chanticleers their first bid to the Big Dance since 1993.

CCU was attempting to get a leg over the wall in the upcoming season by blending experienced players with new recruits, allowing the backups to learn the ropes while the veterans shouldered the load. At a mid-major, the balance is delicate, and injuries hit harder than they might elsewhere. The Chanticleers will attempt to overcome just such an infusion of bad luck after finding out that freshman point guard Ronald Trapps injured his leg — literally almost as soon as he set foot on campus — and will be forced to sit out his understudy season.

From the Conway, S.C. Sun News:

Trapps had successful surgery Thursday to repair what coach Cliff Ellis termed a “torn patella” that will sideline the newcomer from Lancaster, S.C., for the duration of the season.

“Very unfortunate for him,” Ellis said. “He hurt it playing pickup, I think, the first day that they were all here. His knee just buckled.”

Trapps, who spent last season at Fork Union Military Academy, is one of seven newcomers on the roster this year and was expected to be groomed behind veteran starting point guard Kierre Greenwood in preparation for a larger role in years to come.

“He’s a guy that we wanted to groom with Kierre, but we’re just going to have to wait,” Ellis said. “It definitely was a blow to him. Nobody likes that kind of thing, but he knows there’s nothing he can do about it. It’s just part of the game, part of life. You just have to deal with it.”

In the Big South, the reward for a great season is a shot at the league tournament crown. Run that gauntlet, and you earn yourself a 16-seed more often than not. Booby prize though it may be, we’re certain Cliff Ellis and his Chanticleers would happily take it if they can get through this season without any more injury setbacks.

SMU won’t appeal tournament ban, Brown suspension

Associated Press
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Last month the NCAA announced that due to rules violations found in their investigation of the SMU men’s basketball program, the team would be banned from postseason play in 2015-16 and head coach Larry Brown would be suspended for the first nine games of the 2015-16 season. With a team led by seniors Nic Moore and Markus Kennedy and just one player (Keith Frazier) being the subject of the investigation, it was assumed that SMU would at the very least appeal the postseason ban.

Friday, the school announced that while it will appeal some of the penalties handed down by the NCAA to the men’s basketball and men’s golf programs they will not appeal the postseason ban or Brown’s suspension.

“After careful consideration, however, we will not appeal the NCAA post-season ban on men’s basketball or partial season suspension of Head Men’s Basketball Coach Larry Brown,” SMU president R. Gerald Turner stated in the release. “Although we regret the severe impact on our student-athletes, the simple fact is that the NCAA penalty structure mandates at minimum a one-year post-season ban for the level of misconduct that occurred, in our case, when a former staff member completed an online high school course for a prospective student-athlete, committing academic misconduct.

“In addition, should we appeal this matter, the lengthy process and uncertainty during this period could harm many aspects of the program. Coach Brown and his staff also agree that it is in the best interests of the program to accept these sanctions and move forward.”

Among the penalties the school will appeal (with regards to the basketball program) are the “duration of scholarship losses” and how long the recruiting restrictions placed on the program will last, and the vacating of games Frazier played in during the 2013-14 season.

This a tough turn of events for players who had nothing to do with the violations, as they see their opportunity to return to the NCAA tournament taken away. As a result of the school’s decision, SMU’s season will end March 9 following their regular season finale against Cincinnati.

Kevin Marfo commits to George Washington

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Kevin Marfo committed to George Washington on Friday evening, announcing his decision on Twitter.

“I am grateful and appreciative to all the schools that recruited me. But I will be spending the next four years at George Washington University,” he tweeted.

This caps a successful week for Mike Lonergan on the recruiting trail. On Tuesday, GW landed a commitment from Darnell Rogers, a 5-foot-3 point guard. He is the son of former GW guard Shawnta Rogers, the 1999 Atlantic 10 Player of the Year. GW ends the week by adding a tenacious rebounder to a front court that graduates top rebounder Kevin Larsen after this season. Rogers and Marfo join power forward Collin Smith in the Class of 2016. Seton Hall transfer Jaren Sina will also be eligible in 2016-17.

He cut his list to 10 in August with Pittsburgh, Georgia Tech, Minnesota, Boston College, UMass, Saint Joseph’s, DePaul, Rhode Island and Providence all making the cut along wit the Colonials. He later trimmed the list to five finalists: BC, Providence, DePaul, GW and Rhode Island.

The Worcester Academy (Mass.) forward played for BABC this summer in the Nike EYBL, averaging 11.3 points and 8.8 rebounds per game.  The 6-foot-8 Marfo is listed as the No. 148 overall player in the Class of 2016 by Rivals.