West Virginia forward walks out on team in the middle of game
Whether it's a result of a lack of playing time, friction with a coach or concerns regarding the team's style of play, midseason transfers are becoming more and more common in college basketball these days.
According to multiple reports, the reserve forward left the Mountaineers bench early in the second half of Sunday's 56-46 victory over South Florida and did not return the rest of the game. An angry West Virginia coach Bob Huggins said in his postgame news conference that the absence was both "unexcused" and "inexcusable," adding that Jennings is "never to be seen again, I guess."
"I understand you have to report it and that's fine, but can we talk about the guys who play?" Huggins said. "Because he didn't play anyway. And hasn't played.
"The truth of the matter is he's been a non-entity. You know, we started him to try to get some other guys motivated and things, and he did work hard in practice for a while, but he hasn't -- I mean, look at his career stats. We didn't just lose Kevin Jones. You know what I'm saying? It's a sidebar."
It's unclear what prompted Jennings to leave the bench, but the harsh tone of Huggins' postgame comments suggests their relationship may have been strained. Jennings did not play in the first half against South Florida and had seen his playing time dwindle to just three minutes per night in the Mountaineers' previous 10 games.
Reached at her Staten Island home Sunday night, Jennings' mother, Cora Darby, was unaware of the incident involving her son. Darby said she didn't feel comfortable commenting on his future with the team until she could reach her son by phone and figure out what happened.
The apparent departure of Jennings leaves West Virginia with only nine healthy scholarship players.
Jennings averaged 2.1 points and 2.5 rebounds in 8.6 minutes per game. The 6-foot-8 forward's minutes likely will be absorbed by senior Cam Thoroughman, who started at power forward Sunday for the Mountaineers.
Being a bench player myself for majority of my freshman year on JV. I was frustrated too, but I don't think I ever walked out on my team. I've never heard of something like that. I mean who knows what contributed to Jennings attitude, but honestly, regardless of who you are thats inexcuseable bro. And shows a lack of sportsmanship honestly.
im not gonna pass to much judgment on him, who knows what his reasons were. I have never came close to walking out on a team before, but i have been extremely pissed off at a coach to the point i thought about it.
^Agree with llperez, we have no idea what may have caused him to leave the game, I as a player being frustrated with being benched certain games because of an off game or maybe having a strange relationship with a coach of mine, have contemplated leaving a game before, never have I done it, but I have gotten to the point where the only thing keeping me from leaving was I didn't want to be disrespectful or unfair to my teammates
im a huge wvu fan but even if it was another player id say its completly unacceptable no matter the reason too quit and leave your team like that never heard anything like this in sports we may never know why he did it but it doesnt matter hes completely in the wrong in this situation
my freshmen coach said that i sucked at bball in front of the whole team and gave me shit that whole year...
and even i didnt walk out on the team
but we went 17-2