Following a stretch in which Alabama dropped seven of nine games in the middle of SEC play, it was announced by head coach Anthony Grant that junior forward Nick Jacobs was taking a leave of absence from the program. Grant’s words cast some doubt as to whether or not Jacobs would play another game in an Alabama uniform, and sure enough the forward did not return to the team before the end of the season.
And on Tuesday it was announced by the school that Jacobs has been released from his scholarship and will no longer be a member of the program. Jacobs will have one season of eligibility remaining at his next school.
“We want to thank Nick for his contributions to our program the past three seasons,” Grant said in the school release. “We wish him success with the next chapter of his career.”
Jacobs averaged 8.4 points and 3.5 rebounds per game in 25 contests last season, and for his career the 6-foot-8 forward posted averages of 7.3 points and 3.4 rebounds per game. Alabama returns leading rebounder Rodney Cooper (7.5 ppg, 4.9 rpg) and fellow forwards Shannon Hale (8.8, 3.6) and Jimmie Taylor (3.0, 3.3) from last season’s team, which finished with a 13-19 record (7-11 SEC).
As part of its incoming recruiting class Alabama will add freshmen Jeff Garrett and Riley Norris in the front court, and they’ll also have the services of Longwood transfer Michael Kessens. Kessens averaged 13.7 points and 8.8 rebounds per game in his lone season at Longwood, where he earned Big South All-Freshman Team honors.