Sophomore forward Jasmine Stone will not be able to compete for the women’s basketball team after failing to meet NCAA eligibility requirements, a source close to the program confirmed Thursday.
Stone, who averaged 3.1 points and 6.2 rebounds off the bench for the Owls last season, will be sidelined for the duration of the fall semester. She could possibly become eligible for the spring semester, the source said.
The 6-foot-3, Detroit native’s name no longer appears on the Owls’ active roster.
Although she didn’t start in any of the 26 games she played in last season, Stone was the Owls’ third leading rebounder last season, behind the departed Kamesha Hairston and senior center Lady Comfort.
Stone made an immediate impact for the Owls in her first collegiate game against Drexel last November. The energetic freshman blocked three shots in a span of 36 seconds to help the Owls seal a 61-50 win over the Dragons. She finished the game with nine points and 13 rebounds.
A lively presence on the court, Stone would dance in the center of a circle consisting of her teammates during the pre-game introductions of almost every contest.
Someone else will have to dance in that circle when the season tips off against Central Michigan at the Liacouras Center Nov. 12.
Stone, who played 15.3 minutes per game off the bench last year, was expected to play a bigger role on the team this season. In Stone’s absence, the Owls will have to rely on 6-2 junior forward Shenita Landry, 6-2 sophomore forward Alesha Harris, 6-3 senior center Nicole Pittman and 6-4 junior forward Shanea Cotton to help Comfort on the boards. Landry, who averaged 5.7 rebounds per game last season, was the Owls fourth leading rebounder in 2006.
The Owls begin preseason practice on Oct. 12.
Tyson McCloud can be reached at email@example.com.