DePaul Senior Cleveland Melvin went out in the worst possible way. He was the Big East rookie of the year as a freshman, and had a decent shot of finishing up second to Mark Acguirre as DPU’s second leading scorer. Instead he’s kicked out of school and off the team? Maybe he left by his own accord? We still don’t know. DePaul’s communications about Cleveland Melvin were, quoting Fletch
“we’re in a bit of grey area. How grey? Charcoal.”
We still don’t know what Cleveland Melvin did because of the school’s privacy policies. It’s legal now, and they won’t say anything no matter who you ask or how you ask it. Campus sources say he’s been getting in trouble for awhile, doing the wrong for awhile, but he’s never been in trouble until this year. He was suspended a couple weeks ago, the first infraction he’s ever had, and now he’s parted ways with the program. So we can’t confirm, but we can certainly infer, given that situation, he was kicked out.
The statement released by DePaul about Cleveland Melvin being removed from the team was just 62 words, about as long as your typical TMZ “article.” It told us nothing as all Sports Information Department people do in these types of situations. When bad news like this breaks, they want as little attention on it as possible.
Because Melvin was anything a lead story locally. When DePaul parts ways with the best player on the team, a supposed senior leader, the jewel of the Oliver Purnell recruiting classes, it should be front page news. However, no one cared about the Cleveland Melvin story. It made no media waves at all. Yes, DPU does not want negative publicity, but the lack of publicity surrounding a story of this magnitude is rather telling of how far the program has fallen.
Obviously, I had to ask Oliver Purnell how disappointed he was when he realized that Cleveland Melvin would no longer be a part of his team for his final season.
“It’s always disappointing because I feel like the players are part of my family and I try to treat them like my sons, and that’s what I tell the parents, is that I will try to treat them like my sons. So when one of them has a problem that bothers me like it would my son.”
So where will the leadership come from now? Villanova slaughtered them tonight 87-62 to hand the Blue Demons their seventh straight loss, and someone needs to step up to stop the slide, but who will leave the void left by Cleveland Melvin?
“Obviously, our seniors, Brandon (Young) and Sandi (Marcius) have been good, just talking in practice and helping guys up,” Purnell said.
DPU started 2-3 in conference, and it looked very likely that Purnell would, in his fourth season surpass his previous best Big East record of 3-15. Now without Cleveland Melvin, they’re at 2-10, and no one sees a victory in sight any time soon.
Paul M. Banks owns The Sports Bank.net, an affiliate of Fox Sports. An MBA and Fulbright scholar, he’s also a frequent analyst on news talk radio; with regular segments on ESPN,NBC, CBS and Fox. A former NBC Chicago and Washington Times writer, he’s also been featured on the History Channel. President Obama follows him on Twitter (@paulmbanks)Powered by Sidelines Follow paulmbanks