LaceDarius Dunn won't attend classes
DALLAS -- Baylor guard LaceDarius Dunn was suspended from classes by the university Thursday amid allegations that the star player hit his girlfriend during a domestic dispute, his attorney said.
Attorney Vikram Deivanayagam told The Associated Press it was too early to know whether the suspension would cause Dunn to miss the rest of the semester and be sidelined for at least the early part of the season.
The Waco university was following procedure for a student facing a felony charge, Deivanayagam said. The attorney said he and his client would explore options for trying to get an expediting hearing with university officials.
The leading scorer for one of last season's NCAA regional finalists was suspended by the team last week, when police say Dunn's girlfriend, Lacharlesla Edwards, had her jaw broken in two places in a scuffle with Dunn. The Bears announced the suspension when Dunn was booked on a felony charge of aggravated assault Tuesday.
Edwards has said Dunn didn't hit her and her jaw wasn't broken. She said she wants the charge dropped and her boyfriend reinstated to the team.
Dunn was still attending class before the university notified him of the academic suspension by e-mail Thursday, Deivanayagam said.
"Obviously one of our concerns is we don't want him to miss class," Deivanayagam said. "As of [Friday], he will not be allowed to be on campus until we have our hearing and a decision is made."
A university spokeswoman didn't immediately return a phone call Thursday night. The school has declined to comment beyond a statement Tuesday that it was cooperating with authorities and gathering information on the case.
Earlier Thursday, Baylor coach Scott Drew said he was preparing for the start of practice Oct. 15 without worrying about whether Dunn will join a list of personnel losses that includes Tweety Carter, Josh Lomers and Ekpe Udoh, an athletic power forward who skipped his senior season and was the sixth pick of the NBA draft by the Golden State Warriors.
"I'm not going to speculate on any of that because there's no reason to," said Drew, who was in Dallas to announce Baylor's inclusion in a December doubleheader at American Airlines Center, home of the Mavericks. "That's why we have a process set in place and we wait, and at that point, we'll see what happens."
Dunn was a second-team All-Big 12 pick while averaging 19.6 points and 4.8 rebounds last season when Baylor set a school record with 28 victories and got within one win of making its first NCAA Final Four appearance in 60 years. He needs 451 points, or about 14 per game in a typical regular season, to surpass Terry Teagle as Baylor's career scoring leader.
The Bears open the regular season Nov. 12 against Grambling.
"One thing about coaching is you know things are never consistent and you always have to be ready for adjustment and change," Drew said.
Drew's optimist and enthusiast approach helped bring Baylor back from the depths of a scandal sparked by the shooting death of a player by one of his teammates. He might use those traits to navigate the uncertainty brought on by Dunn's status.
"Life's too short to look at the negatives," Drew said. "Our coaching staff in general is a very positive coaching staff. Our team has a positive attitude, and that's why it's fun going to practice every day."
Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press
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