On Friday afternoon, UNC Charlotte director of athletics Judy Rose announced that junior guard and leading scorer, DeMario Mayfield, has been dismissed from the Charlotte 49ers men’s basketball team due to a violation of athletic department policy. Mayfield had missed the last five games of the season after being suspended indefinitely on Jan. 30.
Mayfield’s dismissal is devastating to the 49ers on multiple levels. Before he was suspended, Mayfield was one of the most prolific scorers in the Atlantic 10 Conference, and was leading Charlotte with an average of 11.7 points per game. In the 20 games he played, Mayfield posted 14 double-figure scoring totals, while shooting 49 percent from the floor. With Mayfield in the lineup for the first 20 games of the season, the 49ers went 16-4. Since Mayfield’s suspension on Jan. 30, Charlotte has dropped three of its last five games.
Mayfield’s absence has been especially noticeable on the offensive end of the floor. The 6’6” guard is an adept ball handler, who excels at penetrating into the lane and finishing at the rim. Prior to his suspension, Mayfield was leading the 49ers in field goal percentage at the rim, and was converting on 80 percent of his attempts around the basket.
The most significant aspect of Mayfield’s dismissal is Charlotte’s past history with transfers. Mayfield transferred from Georgia after the 2010 season, and was playing in his second season with the 49ers. In 2010, Alan Major‘s first year as head coach, 49ers leading scorer Shamari Spears was also kicked off the team. Spears, a transfer from Boston College, had previously been suspended three times that season. Coincidentally, two of the last three transfers at Charlotte led the team in scoring, and both were kicked off the team mid-season.
It appears as though Charlotte is prepared to move on.
“The coaching staff wants to wish DeMario the best in his future endeavors,” Major said. “We will continue to move forward as a team.”