Jan 17, 2013, 6:46 PM EST
For the second straight season No. 6 Syracuse has seen a key contributor be ruled ineligible for competition, with senior forward James Southerland currently sitting out.
Last year starting center Fab Melo was declared ineligible just before the NCAA tournament, and his absence was a big reason why the Orange failed to reach the Final Four.
But the question currently is why Southerland missed Syracuse’s 72-61 win over Villanova, and when will the team’s best perimeter shooter be allowed to return to the floor.
According to Mike Waters of the Syracuse Post-Standard the current eligibility issue may center around the writing of a term paper. Specifically, whether or not a tutor wrote part of Southerland’s term paper.
This isn’t the first time this season that an issue involving Southerland has occurred, as a question regarding the receiving of improper benefits nearly benched him for the Orange’s win at Providence. Southerland made a payment to reimburse for the receipt of the benefits according to the paper, which allowed him to play in the game.
He would be declared ineligible on January 11, one day before the win over Villanova.
After regaining his eligibility and playing against Providence, Southerland was ruled ineligible again two days later. According to two sources, the second suspension centers on a term paper.
One source said the NCAA questioned whether a tutor wrote a portion of Southerland’s term paper.
There was also a change to the Syracuse staff, as director of basketball operations Stan Kissel resigned last month and was replaced by one-time Syracuse graduate assistant Tim O’Toole.
Kissel had worked at Syracuse University since 2005. Kissel served as the program’s liaison to the Academic Services Department, according to the 2011-12 team media guide.
It’s not clear if Kissel’s resignation has anything to do with Southerland’s situation or the NCAA investigation.
The questions regarding the staff changes can be left for another day, but the big question for the the Orange remains where will they get consistent perimeter shooting from if there’s no resolution in regards to Southerland’s eligibility.
Of the Syracuse players who have attempted at least 50 three-pointers (four) the senior from Brooklyn has been the most accurate, as he’s hit 38.4% from distance. The best shooter of the other three players? Brandon Triche, who’s shooting just 31.4% from three.
And with Southerland averaging 13.6 points per game off the bench Jim Boeheim needs his other reserves to up their production, but with the youth of those players it’s more reasonable to expect more offensively from the likes of Triche and C.J. Fair.
Mar 5, 2015, 1:22 AM EST
Neither the Panthers nor the Tigers did themselves any favors Wednesday night, with Pittsburgh’s home loss being the costlier of the two defeats.
Mar 4, 2015, 11:59 PM EST
All of Wednesday’s relevant bubble info can be found right here.
Joe O’Shea’s off-balance three-pointer forces overtime in Bryant’s double OT win over Sacred Heart (VIDEO)
Mar 4, 2015, 11:34 PM EST
Thanks to O’Shea the Bulldogs advanced to the NEC semifinals, where they’ll take on Robert Morris.
Mar 4, 2015, 11:22 PM EST
That didn’t take long.
Mar 4, 2015, 9:38 PM EST
Colson and Demetrius Jackson scored 11 second-half points apiece in Notre Dame’s win at Louisville.
Mar 4, 2015, 9:03 PM EST
D’Angelo Russell scored 28 to lead the Buckeyes, but none of his points were wilder than the two scored by Thompson on this play.
Mar 4, 2015, 5:59 PM EST
Kentucky head coach John Calipari is one of 15 coaches still in contention for this honor.
Mar 4, 2015, 5:13 PM EST
Kaminsky is one of five seniors on the list, and Gonzaga is the only program with two representatives.
Mar 4, 2015, 4:20 PM EST
With the higher seeds hosting in the first three rounds of the Postseason NIT, the four one-seeds could potentially not leave campus before the semifinals at Madison Square Garden.
Mar 4, 2015, 3:40 PM EST
The most recent title odds from Bovada.
Mar 4, 2015, 2:25 PM EST
There are a lot of big bubbles games tonight.
Mar 4, 2015, 1:26 PM EST
These are the small league favorites that can win a game in the NCAA tournament.
Mar 4, 2015, 11:51 AM EST
Hank Gathers died on the court during the WCC tournament.
Mar 4, 2015, 10:42 AM EST
Perry Ellis suffered a nasty looking knee injury last night.
Mar 4, 2015, 10:15 AM EST
I’ve never seen this happen before.
Mar 4, 2015, 9:41 AM EST
Justin Anderson has been out for more than three weeks after fracturing a finger.
Mar 4, 2015, 9:00 AM EST
Two strong teams enter the Valley Conference Tournament with numerous others trying to enter the frame.
Mar 4, 2015, 12:26 AM EST
Kentucky is learning how to win games when they don’t play well. That’s scary.
Mar 3, 2015, 11:58 PM EST
No. 9 Kansas topped No. 20 West Virginia but now the Jayhawks must worry about the health of Perry Ellis.
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