La Salle v Ole Miss

Marshall Henderson suspended for three games and an exhibition

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Ole Miss star Marshall Henderson will start his season a bit late.

The fiery scoring guard will be suspended for an exhibition, the first game of the regular season and the first two games of SEC play, the school announced on Tuesday.

That means that he’ll sit out Friday when the Rebels host South Carolina-Aiken, he’ll miss November 8th’s season-opener against Troy and he’ll be in street clothes when Andy Kennedy’s club hosts Auburn and visits Mississippi State. He’ll begin his season on November 16th against Coastal Carolina. He’ll also be in uniform in late November when Ole Miss makes their way to Brooklyn for the Barclays Classic.

That’s not exactly a murderer’s row, but give some credit: Henderson is by far the most important player on the Ole Miss roster, and the team will be sitting him down for two games in league play. That’s more harsh than what we normally expect out of a school in a situation like this.

“I support this decision, and I am thankful to our leadership for allowing Marshall the opportunity to earn the right to rejoin our team,” coach Andy Kennedy said in a statement. “Marshall has been compliant with the process put in place for him since his suspension in early July, and we look forward to him being back on our team.”

Henderson’s suspension stems from a tumultuous year where he became daily blog fodder for his on-court antics and his hard-partying ways off the floor. He shot to internet stardom when this GIF of his antics after a win at Auburn went viral, but it was social media that really did Henderson in. His twitter feed was uncensored and, at times, too honest about what he’d be doing in his free time, and it seemed like a weekly occurrence that he’d find his way onto Busted Coverage or Deadspin with an embarrassing picture from a late night on the town. It culminated when pictures of Henderson drinking at a bar after Ole Miss won their opening round NCAA tournament game hit the web.

Henderson was eventually suspended as the result of failed drug tests, but he’s done a good job of keeping his nose clean since then. His twitter account has remained dormant, and he’s mostly kept his name and face off of the blogs.

“This has been a difficult time for me, and I appreciate this chance,” Henderson said.

Hopefully, that will last throughout the season, because college basketball needs a villain and there is none more entertaining than The Landshark himself.

VIDEO: Winthrop’s Keon Johnson goes coast-to-coast for buzzer-beater

Winthrop's Keon Johnson (5) shoots a layup while defended by Coastal Carolina's Warren Gillis during the first half of the Big South Conference Championship college basketball game Sunday, March 8, 2015, in Conway, S.C. Coastal Carolina won 81-70. (AP Photo/Richard Shiro)
(AP Photo/Richard Shiro)
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Winthop earned a Big South road win at Radford on Saturday afternoon as junior guard Keon Johnson raced coast-to-coast and buried the game-winner at the buzzer.

The 5-foot-7 Johnson erupted for 32 points in the win and he’s been one of the most potent mid-major scorers in the country this season. The win moves Winthrop to 18-7 on the season and their 10-4 mark in the Big South ties them with UNC Asheville atop the conference standings.

(H/T: LiveonASN)

After blowout of South Carolina, is No. 22 Kentucky a Final Four contender?

Kentucky guard Tyler Ulis (3) guards the ball after a rebound during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Auburn, Saturday, Jan. 16, 2016, in Auburn, Ala. Auburn won 75-70. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
(AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
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It only took 2:26 for official Doug Sirmons to plant two technical fouls on Kentucky head coach John Calipari, and that may have been the worst thing that could have happened to South Carolina.

He poked the bear, and the result was that a ticked off No. 22 Wildcat team proceeded to run the Gamecocks out of their own gym, 89-62.

The star of the show was interim head coach Tyler Ulis, who put together as dominating of a performance as you’ll ever see out of a player that stands 5-foot-9. Ulis finished with 27 points and 12 assists, hitting 4-for-8 from three and turning the ball over just once.

Marcus Lee added 11 points and 13 boards, including six on the offensive end, and Jamal Murray had his customary 26 points on 9-for-21 shooting, but the story of this game was Ulis.

I’m not sure I’ve ever seed a player under 6-foot capable of dominating a game the way that Ulis can dominate. Murray can take over with the best of them — we saw it against Florida and Ohio State — but when it comes to the NCAA tournament, this Kentucky team will go as far as Ulis carries them.

And based on the way that he’s played in the last six weeks, that could end up being pretty far. In SEC play, Ulis is averaging 19.4 points and 7.6 assists. He’s scored at least 17 points in 12 of the last 14 games and has notched as least five assists in all 14. He just orchestrated a total mollywhopping of a Frank Martin-coached team that was tied for first place in the SEC while playing without his head coach and on the road.

The issue with Kentucky is the same today as it was a month ago. They’re a two-man team with an inconsistent supporting cast. When their two studs play like this, they can beat anyone in the country. When they don’t, they can struggle against anyone.

But here’s the thing: When Ulis is playing the way that he’s played of late, they don’t really need all that much from their supporting cast. Derek Willis needs to be able to space the floor. Lee and Skal Labissiere need to be able to hold their own against opposing big men.

And when that happens?

Kentucky is clearly the best team in the SEC and good enough to be able to win four straight in the Big Dance and get to a Final Four.