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NCAA Basketball

San Diego State’s Winston Shepard Suspended 3 Games

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Christopher Hanewinckel-US PRESS

Add San Diego State‘s Winston Shepard to the list of NCAA suspensions this season.  Shepard, a freshman forward, will sit out three games for receiving impermissible benefits.

According to Mark Ziegler of the San Diego Tribune, Shepard co-signed on a car loan with a family he met while attending Findlay Prep in Las Vegas.  Although this was an inadvertent violation, SDSU reported it to the NCAA.

The suspension will cause Shepard to miss the Aztecs home opener against San Diego Christian along with games against Missouri State and Arkansas-Pine Bluff.  Shepard will still practice for the duration of his suspension.

You’ve got to respect San Diego State for self-reporting the incident instead of the NCAA finding this out later down the road.

After losing to Syracuse, the suspension of Shepard only makes the start of this season worse for the Aztecs.  It is crucial for freshman to get game experience in the preseason before conference starts, so Shepard will have some catching up to do after sitting three games out.

Shepard provides them with athleticism and size, something San Diego State is in desperate need of.  He has potential to hugely impact the success of the team, but unfortunately that will have to wait.

With the suspension coming early in the season, hopefully it won’t impact the Aztecs terribly, but it’s never good to lose important players at any time during the season. Shepard has hopefully learned his lesson.

 

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NCAA Tournament Profile: San Diego State Aztecs

Record: 26-8

RPI: 26

BPI: 42

Conference: Mountain West Conference

How They Qualified: At-Large Berth

Region: No. 8 in the South

 

Another year in the Mountain West, and yet another year the San Diego State Aztecs were one of the conference’s top teams (tied for first place with the Boise State Broncos in the regular season conference standings).

The MW hasn’t been getting a whole lot of love this year, but this isn’t San Diego State’s first rodeo — not even close. In fact, most fans probably expect the Aztecs to make the tournament on a yearly basis now.

 

What You Need to Know:

Leading Scorer: Aqeel Quinn, Winston Shepard (11.1 PPG)

Leading Rebounder: Winston Shepard (5.3 RPG)

Leading Passer: J.J. O’Brien (2.5 APG)

Bad Losses: Fresno State, Washington

Good Wins: Utah, BYU, Pittsburgh, Wyoming (twice), Colorado State (twice)

 

Needless to say, the Aztecs challenged themselves this season, and got a huge win over Utah. They also played the Arizona Wildcats (only lost by two points) and Cincinnati Bearcats (lost in overtime). Both teams are also part of the field of 68.

Yeah, San Diego State certainly didn’t have an easy non-conference schedule, but that should only benefit it in the dance, a tournament that features an endless amount of talent and a boatload of teams with different playing styles.

The Aztecs made it to the Sweet 16 last season, but that team also had Xavier Thames. The NCAA tournament can be a weird beast, though, so it will be interesting to see if this version of San Diego State can go on a deeper run.

The San Diego State Aztecs are dancing!

Trevor Lowry is a Content Associate at RantSports.com. If you’re a tweeter feel free to follow him @TheTrevorLowry, “Like” him on Facebook or add him to your network on Google.

The San Diego State Aztecs will be making yet another appearance in the NCAA tournament.

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