Mayben pleads not guilty to charges

Updated: September 24, 2009, 7:50 PM ET
ESPN.com news services

TROY, N.Y. -- Binghamton University basketball player Emanuel "Tiki" Mayben pleaded not guilty at his arraignment Thursday to possessing and selling cocaine.

Mayben, who led Binghamton last season to its first appearance in the NCAA basketball tournament, was arrested Wednesday night in his hometown of Troy. Investigators were taking him into custody on a sealed indictment charging him with selling cocaine twice on June 29 when they found 3.4 grams of cocaine on him, police said.

[+] EnlargeEmanuel Mayben
Chris Keane/Icon SMIEmanuel Mayben pleaded not guilty Thursday to felony charges that he possessed and was attempting to sell crack cocaine.

Mayben was arrested as a result of a three-month undercover probe of cocaine sales in Troy, police said.

Greg Cholakis, Mayben's lawyer, said his client was released on $20,000 bail and was on his way back to Binghamton to resume classes. Mayben didn't make a statement in court Thursday.

Mayben, 22, has never been in trouble before, Cholakis said.

"I did all I could," head coach Kevin Broadus told The New York Times on Wednesday night. "I tried to help the kid."

Binghamton athletic director Joel Thirer said Mayben has been permanently dismissed from the basketball program. "It's a privilege to be a student-athlete and represent this University and we will not allow that privilege to be abused," Thirer said in a prepared statement.

Broadus did not immediately return a call seeking comment Thursday.

Mayben set a school single-season record for assists last season. He was named to the America East Conference All-Tournament team in March and was a second-team all-conference selection.

He was once rated the No. 1 recruit in the country for his age group at Troy High School.

Mayben was recruited by Syracuse University out of high school, but academic shortcomings prevented him from playing for the Orange. He instead began his college career at the University of Massachusetts, where he sat out one season before playing 31 games in the 2006-07 season. He transferred to Hudson Valley Community College, where he played during the 2007-08 season.

College president Lois DeFleur said in a prepared statement that Mayben's behavior doesn't reflect the quality of Binghamton's athletic program. "We appreciate that Coach Broadus has given second-chances to athletes but our program can not take these risks and I have made this clear to both Thirer and Broadus."

Mayben's arrest is the latest legal problem for a player under Broadus since he took over the program in 2007.

Former player Miladin Kovacevic, who wasn't recruited by Broadus, left a classmate in a coma for several weeks after a barroom brawl in May 2008. Kovacevic jumped bail and fled to his native Serbia, setting off a dispute between the U.S. and Serbia over Kovacevic's extradition and prosecution.

Kovacevic has remained in Serbia, where officials have promised to prosecute him with assistance from New York authorities. The Serbian government paid $900,000 in compensation to the family of the victim as part of the prosecution deal.

In November, Malik Alvin, a transfer student brought in by Broadus, was charged with stealing condoms from Wal-Mart.

After Binghamton's NCAA appearance, Broadus signed a contract extension through the 2013-2014 season.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.