BATON ROUGE, La. — When the LSU basketball team takes the court Monday night for its first exhibition of the 2016-17 season, it will be without starting forward Craig Victor II.
LSU basketball coach Johnny Jones announced Thursday afternoon that Victor, a 6-foot-9 junior forward from New Orleans, will miss the Tigers’ first handful of games due to violating an undisclosed team rule.
“Early on he’ll miss a couple of games I think in the beginning of the season,” Jones said. “I’ve just got to challenge him. We have some team rules in place that you have to abide by. He failed to do that. But he’s certainly back on track now and taking care of his responsibilities.”
Jones went on to confirm that the rule was not an academic one, so eligibility should not be a concern.
Victor played in 25 games for the Tigers last season, averaging 11.5 points and 5.6 rebounds per game. On a per-game basis, only Philadelphia 76ers No. 1 pick Ben Simmons averaged more rebounds and blocks than Victor for the Tigers last year.
With Victor out of the lineup, LSU will lean heavily on junior college transfer Duop Reath as the team’s enforcer under the net. Jones said that he also expects to use a rotation of Elbert Robinson III, Aaron Epps and Wayde Sims in the frontcourt.
Victor missed some practice time early in the fall due to an undisclosed injury. Jones would only go as far as to say Victor “got banged up,” but he’s fully recovered at this point.
“I think he’s done exceptionally well,” Jones said. “I’m really pleased with Craig. I think he’s done exceptionally well with his body. He’s really good with his shot. I think we’ve gotta just keep him motivated about rebounding because his effort is there.”