Duke Basketball Suspends Junior Guard Grayson Allen Indefinitely for Tripping
Duke basketball announced Thursday that it has suspended guard Grayson Allen indefinitely.
Allen was caught intentionally sticking out his leg and tripping Elon guard Steven Santa Ana during a game on Wednesday night. The incident occurred late in the first half of the Blue Devils’ eventual 72-61 win when Santa Ana drove past Allen on the baseline. In apparent frustration, Allen clearly tripped Santa Ana, sending him to the floor.
Allen was given a technical foul.
Duke head coach Mike Kyrzyzewski issued a statement on the matter:
“We have had the opportunity to thoroughly review the incident involving Grayson Allen from last night’s game against Elon. As I stated last night, the incident was unacceptable and inexcusable. He took an important step last night by apologizing in person to Steven Santa Ana and Coach Matt Matheny. As a program, we needed to take further steps regarding his actions that do not meet the standards of Duke Basketball. To that end, we have determined that Grayson will be suspended from competition for an indefinite amount of time.”
The incident did not take place in a conference game, yet the ACC does own the jurisdiction to potentially discipline Allen further. According to ESPN’s Andy Katz, though, the conference agrees with the school’s suspension and is not expected to take further action.
Allen has a track record
This was not the type of play that would have normally garnered a suspension on its own, but it is the third such incident involving Allen over the course of the last year. Allen tripped players in games against Louisville and Florida State over a two-week span last season.
Those actions drew public ire from ACC officials, though no formal discipline was handed down.
Allen formally apologized to his team and to Elon through the media in addition to addressing Santa Ana and Matheny in person. After the game, Kyrzyzewski described the player’s actions as “unacceptable.
— Dick Vitale (@DickieV) December 22, 2016
Allen remained on the bench for the final eight minutes of the first half following the trip. He remained there to start the second half, but returned to the floor with about 16 minutes to play. The junior guard would finish the game with just three points on 1-for-8 shooting from the floor in 21 minutes of action.
In an interview with ESPN prior to the beginning of the season, Allen expressed remorse regarding the two tripping incidents that took place during his sophomore campaign:
“I think ultimately, I just made a mistake — two mistakes — and they were big ones and mistakes I regret. Ultimately, I let my emotions get the most of me — in the heat of the moment, you know, did something that’s unacceptable and not something I’m proud of. I think I’m a lot more mature now.”
What will Duke be missing?
Allen’s performance has taken a step back this season as he has dealt with a few foot injuries. After averaging more than 21 points last season, he’s scoring 16 points per game on just 38 percent shooting from the field through the team’s first 13 games this year.
There is no timetable for his return to the court. The 12-1 Blue Devils will enjoy a lengthy break before they will get ACC play underway on New Year’s Eve against Virginia Tech.
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