Sign in
View: Mobile | Desktop
 
FOLLOW US:  Facebook  Twitter  LinkedIn  RSS
Men Women
U.S. Virgin Islands Internationally
Authors:


 
David Edole

Facebook
Join Us!!! We are looking for someone to help us cover U.S. Virgin Islands basketball. Please send us an e-mail.
ABA Standings
 1. One Unity 10-0 
 2. T.W.I. 7-3 
 3. Jam Squad 6-4 
 4. Brothers 5-5 
 5. Heavy Hitters 1-9 
 6. VI Finest 1-9 


LaRon Smith's patience & attitude rewarded with Senior Day game - Mar 3, 2017


POSTED BY:
DAVID EDOLE
E-mail David:
David's Articles 
| Follow David on  Facebook


LaRon Smith
Matthew Stevens , Montgomery Advertiser

AUBURN - Laron Smith (203-F-93) certainly didn't transfer to Auburn to sit the bench.

No graduate student transfer has the thought of being a role player not in the normal playing rotation by March but this is the situation Smith found himself in as the calendar flipped to 2017.

Smith, who had been at two low-major programs (Georgia State and Bethune-Cookman) in his four year collegiate career, came to Auburn for his final year of eligibility to be a contributing member of a Power 5 conference program.

'He came here to play, and he wants to play, and he's ready to play,' Pearl said Friday.

Smith even started two days before Christmas and was getting 17.6 minutes of playing time in non-conference play in mid-December. Smith was most known for his one-handed free throw motion that was designed to improve the 28 percent shooting from the charity stripe. For the record, Smith is shooting 15 of 27 (55.6 percent) from the foul line this season at Auburn.

However, then the arrival of Auburn's most acclaimed recruit changed things drastically for Auburn's 6-foot-8 graduate transfer forward. The entrance and clearance of five-star center Austin Wiley cut into both the playing time of Smith and sophomore forward Horace Spencer as the Team USA member was nearly immediately slated into the starting rotation.

'Had Austin Wiley not gotten eligible at mid-semester, which of course, we weren't certain would happen, Laron Smith would be an everyday player for us,' Pearl said Friday. I think (the graduate transfer option) is a great rule. Because I think you should reward somebody, a student athlete that can graduate in three or four years and have the opportunity to transfer.'

With his minutes, production and importance to the on-the-floor product being lessened, Smith continued to find a way to be happy for freshmen teammates Wiley and Anfernee McLemore as Southeastern Conference play began.

'If you believe enough in the process success will come to us,' Smith wrote on in a Twitter message on Feb.16. 'You just have to be willing to see it through to the end.'

Suddenly Smith found himself playing single-digit minutes in the next five games and while a lot fifth-year players would mentally check out at best or at worst for the program, express his frustration publicly with the situation. On Jan. 19, Smith decided to use the social media platform of Twitter to express his attitude. As Auburn (17-13, 6-11 in SEC play) began SEC play 0-3 with disappointing losses home losses to Georgia and Ole Miss, an undermanned squad headed to Missouri without forward Danjel Purifoy. At that moment, Smith decided to put his tweet in practical use by giving Auburn 17 minutes, which nearly matched his playing time in the previous three games combined, in a much-needed 77-72 win over Missouri.

As Missouri arrives at Auburn Arena Saturday, Smith will get a chance to be honored as one of four seniors that also includes T.J. Dunans, Ronnie Johnson and Devin Waddell before the 2:30 p.m. tip on SEC Network.

'I had five or six of my underclassmen come into my office (Thursday) and ask to make a visit with me,' Pearl said. 'We talked about a couple of things, but one of the biggest things on their mind was they wanted to make sure I was going to start the seniors in this last game. Throughout my career, I haven't always consistently done it. I thought it was a really good sign for a team - that one brother was looking out for another brother in spite of the frustration. I was really pleased with that.'

Missouri (7-22, 2-15 in SEC) has lost five straight games since winning two of the last three contests.

Smith continues to use his Twitter page to encourage more attendance at Auburn Arena, send out inspirational messages to teammates and show commitment to a program and campus he'd never been a part of until this past fall.

'Patience is not the ability to wait, but how you act while you're waiting,' Smith tweeted on Jan. 19.

According to Pearl's comments on Tuesday, Smith is on track to get his master's degree in July and has 'accomplished a lot of what he wanted to' in his one academic year at Auburn.

Possibly more than anything, Pearl recognizes Smith hasn't been a problem since seeing his minutes decline in what will be his final few college basketball games.

'I didn't see that (tweet) necessarily, but it doesn't surprise me, because LaRon has been a really good teammate,' Pearl said Friday. 'I've got a lot of respect for the way LaRon stayed right and stayed ready. He will contribute before the season is out again.'

  




Royce
O'Neale
Utah Jazz wing Royce O'Neale uses offseason to take game to next level - 1 day ago
ByEric Woodyard GRANTSVILLE - Royce O'Neale(198-SF-93, college: Baylor)< likes to arrive at the Zions Bank Basketball Campus around 9 a.m. for breakfast. After breakfast there's table work, followed by weight training and basketball drills around 10 a.m. He usually wraps up around noon, goes home for rest and periodically mixes in yoga on some mornings and afternoons. This has been the offseason routine for the Utah Jazz wing since the season ended after a Western Conference semifinals...   [read more]

Rakeem
Christmas
Rakeem in China/ Nic gets the belt - 1 day ago
Rakeem Christmas (206-F-91, college: Syracuse) is currently playing in China's National Basketball League, where he is putting up 20.5 points and 13 rebounds per game in the country's second-tier league. His team is 1-3. Christmas also joined the New Zealand Breakers for the final 12 games of the season in Australia's National Basketball League. The Breakers lost their final six games, including a two-game sweep from the playoffs. Christmas played 14.9 minutes per game, averaging 7.6 poi...   [read more]

Sam Mitchell
Penny Hardaway confirms Sam Mitchell will be Memphis assistant - 7 days ago
Memphis men's basketball coach Penny Hardaway confirmed Wednesday during a media appearance at his basketball camp that he hired former NBA coach Sam Mitchell(202-F-63, college: Mercer) to fill out his assistant coaching staff. Mitchell's hiring had been expected for weeks, but the university's athletic department had yet to make an official announcement. He came to Memphis last month with the expectation of finalizing a deal to join Hardaway's staff. Mitchell, 54, does not have any pre...   [read more]


1 | 2 | 3
Spurs Rumors: Seton Hall's Desi Rodriguez had pre-draft workout - 8 days ago  
Seton Hall offers 2019 forward J'Wan Roberts - 8 days ago  
Rakeem Christmas engaged to Michael Jordan's daughter - 9 days ago  
Samuel in Venezuela - 12 days ago  
Seton Hall's Desi Rodriguez dreaming of life in the NBA - whether he's drafted or not - 13 days ago  
Rakeem Christmas joins China's National Basketball League - 13 days ago  
Positive Guidance 13-15 and 16-18 Teams Win First Place at the 5th Annual Roy Petersen, Sr. Memorial Basketball Tournament - 18 days ago  
Nic Claxton has been 'everything that I thought he would be and more' - 20 days ago  
SUMMER UPDATE: JORDAN MURPHY - 21 days ago  
New York Knicks hosted Desi Rodriguez for pre-draft workout - 22 days ago  
Jeff Jones UNIVERSITY OF VIRGIN ISLANDS BUCCANEERS BASKETBALL CAMPS - 26 days ago  
Virgin Islands to play home game in Puerto Rico - 26 days ago  
Penny Hardaway: Sam Mitchell is 'top candidate' for final Memphis assistant coach position - 28 days ago  
Dates for the 4th annual Emerald Gems youth - 28 days ago  
Utah Jazz wing Royce O'Neale calls rookie season 'a dream come true,' looks forward to future - 28 days ago  
John Collins Named To NBA All-Rookie Second Team - 29 days ago  
POSITIVE GUIDANCE wins YBOA 7th and 8th Grade Divisions - 1 month ago  
Rivera starts pro career - 1 month ago  
Khailieo Terry adds to his highlight reel - 1 month ago  
Seton Hall's Desi Rodriguez works out with Boston Celtics - 1 month ago  
1 | 2 | 3

Site Map:
Latinbasket.com Member Services: Other Basketball Sites:
Copyright (c) 1998-2018 Sports I.T. Solutions Disclaimer

WARNING:
Do not copy, redistribute, publish or otherwise exploit information that you download from the site !
Do not encumber, license, modify, publish, sell, transfer or transmit, or in any way exploit, any of the content of the site, nor will you attempt to do so.