On Saturday the Arkansas State basketball program announced both an addition and a departure, with forward Seth Kisler cleared to return after playing in just one game last season due to injury. It remains to be seen what Kisler can provide the Red Wolves, who are off to a 5-3 start, but at the very least the 6-foot-8 forward gives Arkansas State another player with size.
The departure from the program is where things get interesting. Reserve forward Raeford “Gator” Worsham, who was averaging 6.4 points per game, quit the team and based upon his quote in the release Brady didn’t sound too thrilled with how things went down.
“Also Raeford Worsham has decided to quit the Arkansas State men’s basketball team. The coaches, his teammates, the administration and the university as a whole gave this young man a wonderful opportunity,” Brady said in the release. “We believe some NCAA rules may have been breached as it relates to tampering and we will use all avenues to protect the investment we made.
“As always I’m indebted to the players who wear the Scarlet and Black and I’m proud to coach those who represent this wonderful university. We will continue to improve and look forward to Sun Belt Conference play.”
In other words, when it comes to where Worsham can transfer to the school may impose some limits while also taking this to the NCAA. Limitations are placed on transfers quite often, with some conferences having rules prohibiting transfers within the conference, and more than a few coaches have imposed such limits whether there are allegations of tampering or not.
Tampering’s a serious allegation to make when it comes to these situations, and it will be interesting to see what happens with Worsham moving forward.
James Banks announced on Thursday that he has committed to Texas, joining Jacob Young in Shaka Smart’s first recruiting class as the head coach of the Longhorns.
Banks is an interesting prospect. A 6-foot-10 center from Georgia, Banks is a still-developing prospect that was recruited more on his potential than his immediate ability.
“James Banks emerged as a good low post prospect this spring and summer,” NBC Recruiting Analyst Scott Phillips said. “With a good set of hands, some offensive potential and a frame that can add weight, Banks is a nice upside grab for Texas.”
He’s probably a few years away from having a major impact in the Big 12, but he may not have that much time to develop. Cameron Ridley, Prince Ibeh and Conner Lamert all graduate after this season, meaning that Banks is going to have to contribute immediately when he sets foot on the Austin campus for the 2016-17 season.
Texas has three commitments in the Class of 2015. Smart convinced Kerwin Roach and Eric Davis to remain committed to the program when he took over for Rick Barnes while he landed a commitment from Tevin Mack, who pledged to Smart when he was at VCU.
Memphis just cannot catch a break.
It’s to the point where I almost feel bad for Josh Pastner.
Today, CBSSports.com reported that Kedren Johnson, a 6-foot-4 point guard that was on track towards being an all-SEC point guard at Vanderbilt, could end up missing the season due to a shoulder injury. If he can handle the pain he can avoid surgery and play with the injury, but at the very least, Johnson is going to be less than his best.
Johnson averaged 6.7 points and 2.7 assists last season for the Tigers. He sat out 2013-14 after leaving Vanderbilt and entered last season incredibly out of shape. There was hope that he would be able to make a bigger impact this season and help fill the void at the point guard spot.
This news comes on the heels of Memphis finding out that Jaylen Fisher is heading to UNLV. Who’s Jaylen Fisher? Well, he’s a point guard and top 40 recruit from Memphis that was Pastner’s No. 1 recruiting target that opted to leave the city for his college hoops instead of play for the Tigers.
That’s a bad sign, but not quite as bad as Memphis losing star center Austin Nichols — another local kid — to a transfer over the summer. Nichols transferred to Virginia.