Five Players Leave The Program

Written by Paul Zeise on .

OK, a little bit later today there will be a formal announcement that five players - Quevyn Winters, Derrick Martin, Martins Abele, Marvin Binney and Kadeem Pantophlet are leaving the program.

No doubt this will sound an alarm through some members of the media who seem to love to pile on Duquesne because, like the Pirates, the Dukes are an easy target given their lack of recent success.

But let's be honest here - this is needed if the program is going to move forward and this is no different than what goes on at just about every school in the country when there is a coaching change.

Guys who were not recruited by the new coach fall to the bottom of the depth chart and look to go elsewhere so they can finish their careers as players somewhere else.

So there is no reason to panic, no reason to ask what is wrong with the program and no reason to read anything more into this situation than what it is -- a lot of guys who didn't figure to play a prominent role moving on to a better spot for them.

The lone exception is Winters, who obviously would have been a part of the rotation, but he wants to move closer to his home (Milwaukee) to be closer to his family. Winters lost his grandmother recently and she was instrumental in raising him and he feels like he should be closer to home in order to help his family get through thsi. 

That happens and there is not much more to say about it - he is homesick and even though he was a starter and averaged 22 minutes a game, he wants to go home.

Abele, Binney and Martin were not going to play much next year because don't forget, there are six players coming in and all of them figure to step right into the rotation (though Drake transfer Micah Mason will need a special waiver to be eligible right away).

I'm sure those three saw the writing on the wall and figured they'd rather go elsewhere and have a chance to play than stay around and sit the bench.

Jim Ferry will help all four find a good spot to continue their education and basketball career and that's how these things work.

One other guy - Kadeem Pantophlet, who is from the Netherlands, is going back to his roots and his first love and joining the Dukes soccer team.

So again, you subtract these five players and add junior college point guard Tra’Vaughn White, point guard Desmond Ridenour from Cleveland, Canadian post players Jordan Robinson and Isaiah Watkins and UAB transfer Ovie Soko, another post player who sat out this season and will be eligible next season, and all of the sudden it iis clear this is going to be an entirely new team next year with the exception of the two Jones and Derrick Colter.

That's how you turn things around quickly and I expect the Dukes to take a good step forward next year as a result.


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