The Pitt basketball team suffered two defections on Tuesday as freshman center Steven Adams announced that he was making himself available for the NBA Draft, while junior guard Trey Ziegler has asked to transfer.
The 7-0, 250-pound Adams intends to sign with an agent, meaning he would not be able to withdraw from the draft and return to Pitt.
Coach Jamie Dixon, who played professional basketball in New Zealand with one of Adams’ brothers, supported the decision.
A Big East All-Rookie Team selection, Adams led Pitt in blocked shots (65), rebounding (6.3 rpg.) and field goal percentage (.571), while also contributing 7.2 points per game. While starting all 32 of his games played in 2012-13, Adams totaled two double-doubles, six double figure scoring games and five 10-plus rebound games.
Zeigler, meanwhile, will be transferring for the third time.
Zeigler averaged 4.4 points and 2.0 rebounds in 31 games for the Panthers this year after transferring from Central Michigan. Zeigler received a waiver from the NCAA to play right away at Pitt after his father, Ernie Zeigler, was fired as Central Michigan coach at the end of the 2011-12 season.
Zeigler saw his playing time and production dip significantly with the Panthers but he did score a season-high 18 points in a 93-55 victory over DePaul and helped lead Pitt to an upset of Syracuse on Feb. 2. Zeigler was expected to compete for the starting shooting guard spot next year.
Rice under fire at Rutgers: Rutgers said it would reconsider its decision to retain basketball coach Mike Rice after a videotape aired showing him shoving, grabbing and throwing balls at players in practice and using gay slurs.
The videotape, broadcast Tuesday on ESPN, prompted scores of outraged social media comments as well as sharp criticism from Gov. Chris Christie and NBA star LeBron James.
Athletic director Tim Pernetti was given a copy of the video in late November by a former employee. He suspended Rice for three games a month later, fined him $50,000 and ordered him to attend anger management classes.
USC hires Enfield: Southern California hired Andy Enfield as men’s basketball coach late Monday night after he took Florida Gulf Coast to the round of 16 of the NCAA tournament.
Athletic director Pat Haden said Enfield has reached an agreement with the Pac-12 school and will be introduced today.
The 43-year-old coach was 41-28 in his only two seasons as a head coach at FGCU in Fort Myers, Fla. He led the Eagles to a school-record 26 wins this season, including upsets of No. 2 seed Georgetown and No. 7 seed San Diego State as a 15th-seed in the NCAA tourney. They lost to Florida last Friday.