Missouri freshman declared eligible after missing nine games

Leave a comment

Missouri will get a boost on Saturday as freshman forward JaKeenan Gant has been reinstated and declared eligible, a source confirmed to NBCSports.com.

Gant missed the first nine games of the 2014-15 season as he was held out and questioned for impermissible benefits. Missouri investigated the matter and reinstated last year’s Mr. Basketball in Georgia and he’ll be able to play against Xavier on Saturday.

The 6-foot-8 Gant was a four-star prospect and the No. 52 overall player in the 2014 national class, according to Rivals, and should give an immediate boost to the 5-4 Tigers inside.

Missouri struggled against bigger teams in losses to Arizona, Purdue and Oklahoma this season and Gant should give depth behind Ryan Rosburg and Jonathan Williams III off of the Tiger bench. Gant is productive as a rebounder and also has a decent offensive arsenal if his mid-range game is going. Gant can also settle for too many jumpers, however, and should stay active attacking the rim when possible.

Key Missouri freshman will not be traveling with team to Maui Invitational

1 Comment

Missouri knocked off Oral Roberts on Wednesday night, surviving an early barrage from the Golden Eagles and heading home with a 78-64 win under their belt.

It was the first win of the season for the Tigers, who lost to in-state “rival” UMKC on Friday night, but the news wasn’t all good.

After the game, head coach Kim Anderson announced that Jakeenan Gant would not be traveling with the team as they head to Hawaii for the Maui Invitational. The star of Missouri’s freshman class — and one of the key pieces that Anderson was able to retain in the wake of Frank Haith’s departure — has yet to play in a real game this season as the school tries to parse through what they are terming “a review regarding his eligibility.”

When Gant was a senior in high school, a couple of weeks before he was set to graduate from Effingham County HS in Georgia, he transferred to the School of the Ozarks in Missouri.

Two Missouri freshmen suspended after arrest (UPDATED)

Leave a comment

Missouri will be without a pair of freshmen as big man Jakeenan Gant and small forward D’Angelo Allen were arrested early Sunday morning on suspicion of third-degree assault, according to the Columbia Police Department. Both freshmen have been suspended by head coach Kim Anderson, according to a statement.

A third man, Michael James Martin, was also arrested as police responded after hearing of an assault at approximately 2 a.m. on Sunday at 404 Kenucky Blvd. on the Missouri campus.

A story from Steve Walentik of the Columbia Daily Tribune said that the three are facing a misdemeanor. Allen and Gant, both 18, were later released after being issued summonses.

“We are aware of the situation involving Jakeenan Gant and D’Angelo Allen and have suspended them from team-related activities as we gather more information,” Missouri head coach Kim Anderson said in a statement. “We have high standards for the conduct of our student-athletes and expect much more from them as members of our program.”

According to a police report obtained by the Kansas City Star, the two players and Martin jumped three victims:

Columbia Police were dispatched to Eighth and Elm in reference to a disturbance and found three victims, who had been “walking east on Elm when they were jumped by three to four black males,” according to the police report.

One male victim, 20, reported being hit two or three times as he tried to help a friend, who was on the ground being assaulted by the suspects.

Another male victim, 20, reported that he was assaulted while walking and saw one of the suspects drop his wallet.

The third male victim, 21, also reported being assaulted on the ground.

Sources have told NBCSports that the nature of the altercation is not being portrayed correctly.

Third-degree assault is a Class A misdemeanor and people can be charged for attempting to cause or recklessly causing physical injury. Threatening another individual and making them apprehensive about physical injury can also lead to charges.

Those found guilty may face up to one year in jail or a fine up to $1,000 or both.

The 6-foot-8 Gant was regarded as a four-star forward while the 6-foot-6 Allen was a three-star small forward coming out of high school. Both freshmen will now be behind the other first-year players the program brought in and it could affect their playing time early in the year.

Report: Jakeenan Gant will not ask out of his NLI at Missouri

Leave a comment

The good news keeps rolling in for Missouri.

On Wednesday afternoon, the program announced that they would be retaining associate head coach and elite recruiter Tim Fuller on staff, a hold over from Frank Haith’s tenure. Fuller landed his first win on the recruiting trail on Wednesday as well, as KansasCity.com is reporting that Jakeenan Gant will not ask out of his letter of intent.

Gant, who is from Georgia, was the No. 52 recruit in the class of 2014, and while the Tigers are still waiting to hear from Namon Wright, keeping Gant around means that new head coach Kim Anderson will have a solid core to build on. Wes Clark, Johnathan Williams III, Ryan Rosburg and Shane Rector are among the returnees while Baylor transfer and former top 50 recruit Deuce Bello will be eligible to play this season.

It will be interesting to see how the pieces come together, but there is talent on this roster for Anderson to work with.