Memphis Tigers junior guard Geron Johnson has been suspended for the Tigers’ first three games by the NCAA for accepting extra benefits. The benefits were educational expenses Johnson received from a family friend before his enrollment at Memphis.
Coach Josh Pastner was aware of the situation during Johnson’s recruitment to Memphis.
“We’re the ones that alerted the NCAA on it,” Pastner said to the Commercial Appeal. “It’s strictly related to educational expenses. We knew there was a chance he might have to sit some games and that’s the case.”
The amount of money that Johnson received has not been reported, however, he will have to pay the money back.
Johnson, a junior college transfer from Dayton, Ohio, will miss No. 17 Memphis’ opener Monday against North Florida Ospreys at FedExForum, its Nov. 17 home game against Samford Bulldogs and the Tigers’ championship-round opener of the Battle 4 Atlantis in the Bahamas versus VCU Rams on Nov. 22.
Johnson can travel with the team to the Bahamas and play in its second game of the tournament Nov. 23.
Johnson is a player that comes to the Tiger’s program with a history of drama. Making a move to Memphis was an opportunity for the guard to get a fresh start.
He has been kicked out of two junior colleges in back-to-back years after run-ins with police. He was arrested his junior year of high school for attempted burglary after he and two others had been caught trying to break into an apartment. During his freshman year of high school, Johnson was dismissed from the team after an arrest for marijuana possession led to a short jail term.
There have been no reports of Johnson having any issues since being a member of Tiger’s program.
Patosha Jeffery is the Memphis Tigers Featured Columnist at Rant Sports. Be sure to follow her on Twitter: @patoshajeffery