By Jeremy Powers
Dez Wells is an impressive young player.
Wells is a six foot five inch beast of a guard, who plays above the rim, using his athletic abilities to his advantage.
Wells is a stat-sheet stuffer, who proved that by averaging nearly 10 points and five rebounds per game as a freshman.
Wells is the kind of player college coaches covet as a cornerstone of their program.
Wells was a Xavier Musketeer.
The Atlantic 10 All Freshman Team selection was expelled from XU on Tuesday after breaking the university’s student code of conduct. CBSSports.com reported that Wells’ expulsion was in response to a sexual-related incident, which cannot be detailed further.
It’s good to see that Xavier Conduct Board (UCB) did not turn to leniency when dealing with this violation. When dealing with popular student athletes, schools feel an immense amount of pressure to do the right thing, while preserving the money-maker, which is sports. Strong actions from Xavier supported that no student-athlete is different from any other student, and that is worth commending.
The school’s basketball program has dealt with a tumultuous offseason after an even more rocky go of it during the latter half of the its 2011-12 campaign. Soon after the season ended, head coach Chris Mack asked senior-to-be Mark Lyons to leave the program claiming that the two sides did not fit well together. An interesting move, which makes one think that maybe the Musketeer players, Lyons to be specific, were more responsible for the build up that resulted in an on-court brawl with the University of Cincinnati.
In case you don’t remember, XU and UC were in the spotlight for the wrong reasons in December when nasty trash talking led to pushing, shoving, and a punch that had former Xavier center Kenny Frease bleeding from the lower eye.
While UC’s Yancy Gates was suspended longer than other player involved in the brawl because of his landed right hook on Frease, Xavier’s careless actions leading up to the punch, combined with their mindless words in front of reporters at the post-game press conference must have played a role in their coincidental offseason story lines.
Maybe its karma for a program that seemed to play the “victim” role during last season’s Crosstown Shootout. Or maybe the school’s streak of seven straight NCAA Tournament appearances was meant to come to an end.
Stay tuned for the next edition of TheSportsKraze.