Wildcats suspend Turner again

2012-03-07T17:02:00Z 2012-05-31T14:35:21Z Wildcats suspend Turner againBruce Pascoe Arizona Daily Star

LOS ANGELES -- The Arizona Wildcats have suspended freshman guard Josiah Turner for the second time this season Wednesday, this time indefinitely.

Turner did not make the trip with the Wildcats to the Pac-12 Tournament on Wednesday and was suspended indefinitely for what UA coach Sean Miller termed a "violation of team rules."  UA also cited the same reason for suspending Turner for its Dec. 7 game at Florida.

“I am disappointed in Josiah for his actions," Miller said in a statement. "Unfortunately this suspension comes at a time of great excitement and opportunity for our team. However, the standards of our program will not be compromised under any circumstances. Hopefully, Josiah will learn a valuable lesson from this experience.”

UA officials declined additional detail about the suspension.

The most highly touted of UA’s four freshman, Turner has struggled on and off the court all season. He is averaging 6.8 points and 2.4 assists, and Miller said recently that with Turner "it's almost improvement by inches."

Not only was Turner suspended for Arizona’s Dec. 7 game at Florida but he also sat out at the beginning of UA's Nov. 9 game with Duquesne because he was late to a pregame shootaround.

He did not play at all in the Wildcats' next game, on Nov. 13 against Ball State, after which Miller said Turner was still making adjustments "on and off the court."

He has started 16 of the Wildcats' past 17 games, however, and had several solid games in Pac-12 play.

"He’s shown flashes and certainly had his moments," Miller said last month. "The light shines differently for freshmen. Some get off to a fast start and they have that valley. With Josiah it's almost improvement by inches.

"We try to instill an aggressive nature in him; he’s practiced better and he knows our system better. He’s just more prepared. We can continue to point to Josiah's play as one of the reasons for our success."

Arizona is scheduled to play the winner of today's UCLA-USC game in the quarterfinals Thursday at 3:40 p.m. The Wildcats are likely to start Nick Johnson at point guard in Turner's place, as they did at Florida, with Jordin Mayes backing up.

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