Hours after watching the NCAA tournament selection show with his teammates Sunday, Rayshawn Goins was arrested outside an apartment party near campus on charges of obstruction of justice and disorderly conduct. James Madison suspended the senior forward Monday for the first half of Wednesday's First Four game against fellow No. 16 seed LIU-Brooklyn.
In a comment prior to the announcement of the suspension that makes it sound as though the decision was out of his hands, James Madison coach Matt Brady told the Daily News-Record, "I'm a good soldier, I'll follow the matching orders I'm given."
That James Madison would face this distraction days before playing in the NCAA tournament is a fitting conclusion to a disastrous year for the CAA.
It began with the immediate departure of VCU to the Atlantic 10 and the imminent exit of Old Dominion to Conference USA. Then came the collapse of preseason league favorites Drexel and George Mason during non-league play, severely damaging the CAA's RPI. And finally, with top seeds Northeastern and Delaware both losing in the league tournament, a conference used to competing for multiple NCAA bids had to settle for its lone representative receiving a No. 16 seed and a spot in one of the play-in games.
If Goins can't play Wednesday, that severely reduces James Madison's chances of winning that game too. The third-team All-CAA pick averaged 12.7 points and 7.4 rebounds per game this season.
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LIU-Brooklyn, James Madison's opponent on Wednesday, has been to the NCAA tournament three straight years now. The run-and-gun Blackbirds lost as a No. 15 seed to North Carolina 102-87 in 2011 and as a No. 16 to Michigan State 89-67 last year.
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