Last season Southern Miss, which was being investigated by the NCAA for possible rules violations that occurred under Donnie Tyndall, took the step of self imposing a postseason ban. Of course Doc Sadler’s Golden Eagles, who finished the season with just nine wins, were unlikely to play in the postseason but such moves are made to placate the NCAA Committee on Infractions.
Sunday night Southern Miss announced just days before their regular season opener that they’ve decided to self-impose a postseason ban for the 2015-16 season as well.
“I am very disappointed for the current members of our men’s basketball team and coaching staff, none of whom were involved in any alleged violation of NCAA rules,” Southern Miss athletic director Bill McGillis said in the release. “While excruciating due to the impact on the young men in our program today, the decision to withhold our team from postseason competition following the 2015-16 season is appropriate given the findings of the recent university and NCAA review of our program.”
It goes without saying that this is an unfair situation for Sadler, who had nothing to do with the seven Level I rules violations (the most severe variety), his coaching staff and the players. None of those individuals had anything to do with those alleged violations, and in the case of the coaching staff none were there working for Tyndall before he moved on to Tennessee (where he was fired after just one season as a result of this investigation).
But given the way penalty structures are set up, it’s the coaches and players who are currently on campus who are made to pay for past transgressions. The timing of this is unfortunate to say the least, as the four seniors on the roster don’t have the opportunity to at the very least look into transferring to a school eligible for postseason play without penalty. While some may use that as a reason to criticize the NCAA, this is the best they can do and it’s a system that was set up by the member schools.
Tyndall spent just two seasons in Hattiesburg, winning 56 games and taking Southern Miss to the quarterfinals of the Postseason NIT in both years. But those on-court achievements have come at a significant cost, one that keeps Sadler and company from achieving some semblance of success themselves.
Southern Miss received a boost to its injury-depleted lineup late this week with the return of sophomore guard Shadell Millinghaus. The sophomore had originally intended to transfer and left the team after playing in seven games and starting in six this season. But now Millinghaus is back with the team and hoping to contribute.
“The team, as well as the coaching staff, welcome Shadell back and we look forward to the future,” head coach Doc Sadler said in the release.
A 6-foot-2 native of Brooklyn, Millinghaus averaged 8.6 points, 2.7 rebounds and 1.1 assists per game this season on 52 percent shooting from the field and 46 percent shooting from 3-point range.
“I’m glad to be back in the program,” Millinghaus said in the release. “I’m just here to support them in any way possible and I’m looking forward to the future.”
The return of Millinghaus comes at a good time for the Golden Eagles. Southern Miss is in the midst of a seven-game losing streak and is 0-4 in Conference USA this season.
Coming off of a disappointing performance in their 75-43 home loss to Rhode Island last Saturday, Southern Miss will look to get back on track Saturday night against Division II program Spring Hill. Head coach Doc Sadler will have some work to do when it comes to his rotation, as he announced Friday that two guards are leaving the program.
Sophomore Shadell Millinghaus and junior Dallas Anglin, two of the Golden Eagles’ best perimeter shooters, are no longer with the program according to Patrick Magee of the Sun Herald. Millinghaus, who started six of Southern Miss’ seven games this season, was averaging 8.6 points and 2.7 rebounds per game.
Anglin, who began his college career at Hofstra and played at the College of Southern Idaho for Southern Miss assistant Jeremy Cox last season, was one of the team’s top reserves and averaged six points per game. Both players were 6-for-13 from three this season, with the percentage (46.2%) making Millinghaus and Anglin the top two three-point shooters on the team.
“We have released Dallas and Shadell from the men’s basketball program,” Sadler said in a release per Magee’s report. “I wish them both the best of luck in their future endeavors.”
With Millinghaus and Anglin no longer in the fold guards such as Chip Armelin and Rasham Suarez will be asked to do more to support redshirt sophomore Matt Bingaya, who’s currently leading the team in scoring with an average of 15.9 points per game. Southern Miss’ second-leading scorer is junior forward Norville Carey, who’s currently averaging 10.1 points per contest.
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With the presumed favorite to be the new head coach at Southern Miss making the decision to keep his current job, athletic director Bill McGillis’ search for Donnie Tyndall’s replacement continued. And according to a report by Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com the search has reached its conclusion, with Iowa State assistant Doc Sadler the choice to fill the vacancy. The report was confirmed by Travis Hines of the Ames Tribune.
Sadler has plenty of experience as both an assistant and head coach, with his most recent head coaching stint coming at Nebraska (2006-12). And there’s also some familiarity with Conference USA, as Sadler was head coach at UTEP from 2004-06, posting a record of 48-18.
Of course the Conference USA he’ll be coaching in this time around has a much different look than that edition, with programs such as Louisville, Marquette (both schools moved to the Big East in 2005) and Memphis among the members during Sadler’s time at UTEP. He’ll be taking over a Southern Miss program that’s been successful in recent years, with the Golden Eagles having won 20 games or more in each of the last five seasons.
Southern Miss won 29 games and a share of the Conference USA regular season title in 2013-14, but the Golden Eagles will lose four of their top five scorers. The leading returnee at this point in time is guard Aaron Brown, who averaged 9.9 points and 4.3 rebounds per game last season.
Billy Gillispie’s been trying to get back into college hoops for months. The ex-Kentucky coach didn’t do himself any favors with his alcohol troubles, but his friends and coaching peers know his coaching acumen – particularly on defense – would be a benefit.
Among them? Nebraska coach Doc Sadler.
And it just so happens Sadler could use a defensive guru to bolster his team’s transition to the Big Ten next season. Except that guru won’t be Gillispie. From Omaha.com:
During a routine call Saturday to check in with the Nebraska men’s basketball coach, I asked about the fourth iteration of the rumor — joining the ones from April, May and June — that former Kentucky coach Billy Gillispie is joining the Husker staff as an assistant.
“Like I told you before,” Sadler said, “I’ve tried to hire Billy, but it ain’t going to happen.”
Word is Gillispie wants to be a head coach (he wanted the UTEP job), not an assistant. That’s admirable, I suppose. If he doesn’t need the dough, then he can return to the sport on his own terms. Or at least when he wears everyone else down.
Mike Miller’s also on Twitter @BeyndArcMMiller, usually talkin’ hoops. Click here for more.