Alabama will take on LSU Saturday night at 6 p.m. with some personnel problems, after head coach Anthony Grant suspended starting point guard Trevor Releford, forward JaMychal Green and guard Andrew Steele for violating team rules. They join junior forward Tony Mitchell in their suspension.
“We are extremely disappointed in the choices and decisions made by these young men that has led to this suspension,” Grant said in a news release. “Talent is a gift, but character is a choice. The consequences of their choices have negatively impacted them as individuals and the people that love and support them. Our hope is that they will be mature enough to accept responsibility for their actions and place a higher value on their character.”
The three suspended players accounted for approximately 41 percent of Alabama’s scoring so far this season. When adding in the suspension of Mitchell, that makes for 59.8 percent of the Crimson Tide’s scoring that is not available against the Tigers.
Releford led the team in minutes played, assists and steals prior to his suspension. He also led the Southeastern Conference in free throw percentage, at almost 86 percent. Green is the team leader in offensive rebounds and free throw attempts as well as the only senior on the roster.
Steele had recently made his return to collegiate basketball after nearly ending his career due to issues with concussions and ankle injuries. Alabama will play with only one upperclassman, junior guard Ben Eblen. The rest of the 10-man roster is made up of five freshmen and four sophomores.
Of the ten players remaining for tonight’s game against LSU, only two average over 20 minutes per game: freshmen guards Levi Randolph and Trevor Lacey. All ten players eligible to play in Baton Rouge average under ten points and four rebounds per game.