Well, men's basketball isn't looking so good heading into the first few weeks of games after senior forward Marcus Van was officially dismissed Friday by coach Ernie Zeigler. Van had some problems over the summer, as he was charged, along with three others, in a debit card conspiracy. He was sentenced to 15 days in jail, probation, restitution and community service. For that, he was given a three-game suspension to begin the year.
I just got off the phone with Coach Zeigler a few minutes ago and he said the incident or incidents that caused the dismissal were totally unrelated to the arrest . I've been hearing rumors about why he was dismissed, but I can not responsibly publish those on here until they are confirmed. But it does come from a pretty reliable source. It's a shame Van didn't do what was necessary to keep his spot. I remember one game last season — Feb. 20 against Ball State — when Van hit five straight field goals and seven of nine to close the half with 16 points. And you can't forget his jumping ability — he had the swagger to make even Rose Arena seem loud after an alley-oop dunk.
I knew Marcus from having a class with him last spring semester and from covering the team. He never seemed like the type who was all-trouble, all-the-time. He was always a cool guy to be around. Unfortunately, these kind of events just showed that Marcus wasn't serious about representing the program in a good light. It's a shame, but CMU has to move on.