Mays: I Plan To Return Next Season

by - Correspondent -

CLEMSON - James Mays, the sophomore forward suspended from Clemson's basketball team after 11 games this season for academic reasons, said he plans to be back in the Tigers' lineup next season.

Meeting with reporters for the first time since being suspended, Mays said he will enroll at Clemson again "most likely in the summer." Asked why he wasn't in school this semester, and if he planned to take classes anywhere else, Mays responded "No comment."

The 6-foot-9, 222-pounder from Garner, N.C., was averaging 9.2 points and 7.6 rebounds per game for the Tigers through 11 contests. His presence at the top of Oliver Purnell's press gave Clemson a full court pressure package that at times could be devastating for opponents.

But apparently a low grade on an exam in one class proved to be the death blow for his eligibility at the end of last semester.

Asked if the suspension caught him by surprise, Mays said "A little bit."

He also denied rumors that the suspension came as the result of cheating in the classroom, but declined to offer any specific details of why he was suspended. He did say, however, that the suspension was due only to academics, and that there were no other factors involved.

Asked what he planned to do between now and the summer, Mays smiled.

"I'm going to support my teammates the best way I can," he said.

Mays' suspension has had a noticeable effect on Clemson on the floor. After the 11-0 start with Mays, the Tigers are just 2-4 without him - including a 2-2 mark so far in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

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