As our blog emperor noted yesterday, with the indefinite suspension of Orlando Williams and the injury to Allen Roberts, Miami's basketball team is effectively Julian Mavunga and a bunch of younger guys. Thanks to recent news out of Oxford, we now know it's going to be that way for the rest of the year.
Williams, a junior guard, was a key player for the RedHawks last season, starting in 29 games (appearing in 32) and averaging 10 points. Earlier this fall, he was suspended for theft. Yesterday, he pleaded no contest to the charges, getting a $350 fine, five days suspended, a year of probation, and court costs. And, from a basketball standpoint, the Dayton Daily News confirmed that Williams is a "former guard" who "is no longer enrolled at Miami."
More bad news was revealed in Miami's game notes (link goes to a PDF) for tomorrow's matchup against Troy. Allen Roberts, a junior guard who beat writer Pete Conrad last reported could miss "anywhere from five days to five months" with a knee injury, will be out for the season after having surgery this month. Roberts, who hasn't played a minute all season, will presumably redshirt, giving Miami seven (seven!!) scholarship players in the class of 2014. Some brief thoughts on what this all means after the jump.
Now more than ever, Miami is Julian Mavunga and some younger guys, and those younger guys will have to step up. Freshman Brian Sullivan has shown a lot of promise so far, ranking among the MAC's top shooters in the early going. Josh Sewell and Quinten Rollins, sophomore guards who were key contributors last season as freshmen -- Rollins started 24 games at point guard -- will be expected to pick up a lot of slack, as will small forward Jon Harris, a solid long-range threat who impressed off the bench last season. And Bill Edwards will need to be the transfer everyone hoped him to be.
Charlie Coles knows that you don't win games with style points, and win or lose, Miami certainly doesn't play a pretty game of basketball. Unless everyone on the team not named Julian Mavunga (currently averaging 20 and 10 a game, and scoring over 34% of Miami's points) makes an effort to make up for what Miami lost in Williams and Roberts, things could go from being "not pretty" to "ugly" in short order.