Mike Anderson already has a pretty talented team in his second season in Fayetteville, with sophomore guard B.J. Young leading the way.
And the possible addition of Houston transfer Alandise Harris could have made the Razorbacks a even safer bet to return to the NCAA tournament for the first time since 2008.
But the school received some bad news, as it was reported that the NCAA denied the Little Rock native’s request for an immediate eligibility waiver.
According to Charles Bahn of ArkansasSports360, Anderson made the announcement at a speaking engagement on Tuesday.
Harris averaged 13.3 points and 6.4 rebounds per game at Houston last season, and had he been eligible to play this season Harris would have given Arkansas a nice boost in the front court.
Marshawn Powell returns after playing just two games last season due to a knee injury, and he’ll obviously be the leader in the paint for the Hogs.
Hunter Mickelson averaged 5.1 points and 3.5 rebounds per game last season, and newcomers Coty Clarke and Jacorey Williams will also be needed in 2012-13.
Had Harris been declared eligible he would have given Arkansas a much-needed boost in depth, and that’s something they needed inside.
Arkansas will have to make up for its lack of size by ramping up the “40 Minutes of Hell” if they’re to make good on the media’s prediction that they’ll finish fifth in the SEC.
Raphielle is also the assistant editor at CollegeHoops.net and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.
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 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.