As the nation heats up for college basketball conference tournaments and then one of sport’s greatest events, March Madness, the world of college basketball is struggling with a few stories that are giving the sport a black eye. The storied Duke basketball program is facing questions regarding guard Rasheed Sulaimon, who was dismissed from the team earlier in the season.
Allegedly, Sulaimon sexually assaulted two women during the 2013-14 academic year and the claims eventually made their way to the Duke coach staff and athletic administration in March of 2014. Sulaimon was removed from the program in late January by Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski.
Another storied NCAAB program, Kansas, will be without one of its prized freshmen, Cliff Alexander, for what has been deemed an “NCAA matter.” There is no timetable on Alexander’s return, but the 6-foot-8 forward has been awful in the Jayhawks past ten games. He only played an average of 15 minutes a game and averaged just 3.8 points per contest.
At Louisville, head coach Rick Pitino had to remove point guard Chris Jones from the roster in late February. Jones was initially suspended from the Cardinals basketball team for sending a threatening text message to a female student. He was reinstated to the team only to break a 9 p.m. curfew. Pitino removed Jones, who averaged 13.7 points a game, from the team following the second incident. Jones has now been charged with rape.
Now that March has come, college basketball is now front and center among major sports. With the spotlight firmly on college basketball, it will be interesting to see if the sport continues to shine throughout March Madness.