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UConn suspends senior Tyler Olander indefinitely after DUI charge

Jeff Eisenberg
The Dagger

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Tyler Olander (Getty Images)

If UConn wasn't sure it could count on Tyler Olander to solidify a thin frontcourt when the offseason began, the Huskies probably are even far less certain whether the 6-foot-9 senior can be trusted now.

Not only has Olander been sidelined most of the summer with a foot injury, he also has been unable to keep his name out of the police blotter.

UConn coach Kevin Ollie announced Monday he had indefinitely suspended Olander for an unspecified violation of team rules. Several Connecticut newspapers subsequently reported Olander had been arrested less than 48 hours earlier and charged with a DUI after failing a sobriety test when police pulled him over at 10:49 p.m. on Saturday night.

Olander would have a better chance for a lenient suspension were this not his second run-in with police of the past six months. Olander was arrested in Florida during spring break last March when he lacked the requisite wrist band needed to be within a gated property and refused to leave at 2 a.m. when confronted by police.

It's unclear how many games, if any, Olander will miss this upcoming season, but it's safe to say UConn needs him on the floor. Though his 4.3 points and 3.7 rebounds per game last season may not sound like much, UConn does not have any better options to start alongside forward Deandre Daniels.

The best option besides Olander is slender but promising forward Kentan Facey, but the Jamaican native has yet to be cleared to play next season by the NCAA. If he's ineligible and Olander isn't an option, that leaves seldom-used forwards Philip Nolan and Leon Tolksdorf or freshman Amida Brimah, a raw seven-footer who picked the Huskies over Old Dominion, Florida International, Mississippi State and Virginia Tech.

Counting on any of those guys for heavy minutes isn't a great option for a UConn team loaded elsewhere with Shabazz Napier, Ryan Boatright, Omar Calhoun and Daniels all returning from last year's 20-win team. As a result, the Huskies need Olander to avoid anymore off-the-court problems, get back in his coach's good graces and prove he'll be capable of rebounding and protecting the rim.

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