Auburn has added four new recruits in a little over a week, but the men’s basketball program lost two players on Friday as head coach Bruce Pearl announced that center Ronald Delph and forward Alex Thompson have taken an, “indefinite leave of absence.”
Delph, a 7-foot-1 freshman, sat out the 2013-14 season while Thompson, a 6-foot-8 sophomore and former walk-on, was awarded a scholarship last season and appeared in 21 games for Auburn.
Thompson averaged one point and 1.5 rebounds per game in 7.8 minutes last season.
The loss of Delph and Thompson isn’t a significant one for Auburn but it’s interesting for a few reasons. For one, Pearl is continuing to immediately overhaul the current Auburn roster by opening up scholarships for more talented players.
Benas Griciunas transferred to Charlotte and Dion Wade left for Miami (Ohio) earlier this offseason.
The departure of Delph and Thompson also opens up two scholarships for Auburn for the upcoming season. The Tigers were at 13 scholarships but now have some wiggle room to bring in 7-foot-1 center Trayvon Reed at mid-season or also maybe add an impact mid-season transfer that could become available.
Pearl has to be pleased either way that he’s recruiting so well so far as he landed Class of 2015 top 100 prospects Danjel Purifoy and Horace Spencer recently while also landing junior college guard T.J. Dunans.