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Reports: Ben Howland no longer interested in Oregon State job

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Oregon State will move on to a new candidate as they continue to search for a new head coach as multiple reports on Monday night indicated that former UCLA head coach Ben Howland has taken his name out of the running for the job. The news was first reported by ESPN‘s Andy Katz.

The Beavers fired former head coach Craig Robinson on May 5th after six seasons and Howland’s name was quickly among the rumored candidates that the struggling Pac-12 program would target for the job.

Howland made three consecutive Final Fours at UCLA from 2006 through 2008 but failed to meet expectations in his last few seasons for the Bruins as he was fired following the 2012-13 season and replaced by Steve Alford. Howland has a career record of 398-205 during a career that includes stops at UCLA, Pitt and Northern Arizona and is known for his ability to rebuild programs that are in a tough spot.

Oregon State hasn’t made a NCAA Tournament appearance since 1990 and only has five postseason appearances since its last trip to the Big Dance.

Now that Howland has moved on, Arizona assistant coach and Portland native Damon Stoudamire is believed to be the leading candidate for the job, according to Katz and other reports. The former 1996 NBA Rookie of the Year was the Pac-10 Player of the Year in 1995 at Arizona and has extensive NBA ties after a 13-year NBA career that included stops in Toronto, Portland, Memphis and San Antonio.

No. 13 Iowa State suspends Jameel McKay indefinitely

Iowa State forward Georges Niang, forward Jameel McKay, forward Abdel Nader and guard Deonte Burton celebrate after center Stuart Nezlek scored late in the second half of an NCAA college basketball game against Coppin State, Wednesday, Dec. 30, 2015, in Ames, Iowa. Iowa State won 104-84 (AP Photo/Justin Hayworth)
AP Photo/Justin Hayworth
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Already lacking depth, No. 13 Iowa State will be short a key contributor Saturday when they take on Oklahoma State in Stillwater.

Friday night it was announced that senior forward Jameel McKay has been suspended indefinitely by head coach Steve Prohm and did not make the trip with the team. McKay, who’s been dealing with knee issues recently, is averaging 12.4 points and a team-high 9.0 rebounds per game on the season.

Over the last six games he’s averaging 7.7 points and 8.7 rebounds per contest, shooting 60.6 percent from the field.

McKay has been asked to man the middle for a team lacking in both size and depth, with Georges Niang shifting over to the five when McKay needs a break for either rest or foul trouble reasons. Without McKay even more responsibility falls upon the shoulders of Niang, Abdel Nader and Deonte Burton in the front court.

The Cyclones are looking to end a two-game losing streak, and even with Oklahoma State’s struggles accomplishing that gets tougher with McKay out of the lineup.

News of McKay’s suspension was first reported by the Ames Tribune.

UNLV dismisses guard Daquan Cook from team

Illinois v UNLV
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LAS VEGAS (AP) UNLV junior guard Daquan Cook has been dismissed from the team.

Interim coach Todd Simon made the announcement on Friday, though no reason was given.

Cook was suspended for 13 games by previous coach Dave Rice in November after being arrested and charged with DUI.

Cook appeared in two games this season after being reinstated, scoring three points in four minutes. He missed the 2014-15 season after tearing his right ACL and played 28 games as a sophomore.