Aug 23, 2013, 2:50 PM EDT
Just before the start of the Atlantic 10 tournament, 7-foot center D.J. Haley made the decision to leave the VCU basketball program in order to concentrate on his academics. In three seasons at the school Haley started 48 of the 102 games in which he played, averaging 2.1 points and 2.5 rebounds per game.
In announcing Haley’s decision to no longer play at VCU, head coach Shaka Smart made the following statement:
“We appreciate DJ’s contributions to our program over the past three years. Unfortunately, he has decided that his heart is no longer invested in basketball. Clearly it takes a significant commitment to compete as a student-athlete at this level and we understand that DJ’s priorities have changed. We wish DJ nothing but the best for his future.”
Having completed his undergraduate studies, Haley’s decided to play his senior season…at USC, where he’ll be eligible to play immediately due to his having graduated.
Haley joins a program that has a new head coach in Andy Enfield, and the program also doesn’t have much in the way of front court depth. Senior Omar Oraby is the most experienced returnee, as he averaged 6.3 points and 3.9 rebounds per game in 2012-13.
USC adds power forward Nikola Jovanovich, and given their options at small forward (veterans Ari Stewart and Byron Wesley, and freshman Roschon Prince), it’s likely a safe assumption that the Trojans will go “small” at certain points this season. But with some of the front court players both arriving and returning to the Pac-12, USC needs all the help they can find in the paint. Haley will help USC in this regard.
- 2014-15 Season Preview: Kentucky’s loaded rotation leads nation’s best front courts 0
- Cameron Payne didn’t expect to fill Isaiah Canaan’s void at Murray State, but he did 0
- 2014-15 Season Preview: The Top 20 Perimeter Attacks 1
- Top 25 Countdown: No. 12 Wichita State 1
- South Dakota State’s Cody Larson thrives despite return home amidst unmet expectations 2
- 2014-15 Season Preview: 20 Impact Freshmen 0
- UNC investigation states bogus classes pushed by academic counselors to athletes 7
- UNC investigation states bogus classes pushed by academic counselors to athletes (7)
- Report: Texas plans to start paying their athletes $10,000 stipend (4)
- 2014-2015 Season Preview: College Basketball’s Top 13 Dunkers (VIDEOS) (3)
- Maryland senior forward suffers sprained ankle (2)
- Texas A&M lands another five-star center, has loaded 2015 recruiting class (2)