One year ago today, the State University of New York–Binghamton basketball team was three days removed from its regular season, toting a 20-8 record and a whole lot of confidence that the NCAA tournament was in its near future (which it was: The Bearcats won their conference tournament and earned an tournament berth). Oh, how the kind-of-mighty have fallen.
A year later, Binghamton's basketball program is in deep trouble, and the president of the school isn't letting the Bearcats compete in the America East Conference tournament, the Pipe Dream reports. That's because the drama surrounding Binghamton basketball reached levels that the cast of Jersey Shore can only dream of. A litany of criminal incidents and charges over the past few years led to the dismissal of six Binghamton players in September and the resignation of Coach Kevin Broadus.
Binghamton President Lois DeFleur cited concerns about the distractions that could come with the Bearcats' participation in the AEC tournament in Hartford, Conn., which begins March 4.
"This action is being done voluntarily as part of our commitment to move forward as we develop a comprehensive plan to address the recommendations of the recent review," DeFleur says in the statement. She is referring to an audit of the athletics program and school that named DeFleur and other university officials as conspirators in a scandal that "overlooked alleged criminal activity and pushed for lowered academic standards," the Pipe Dream says.
SUNY Chancellor Nancy Zimpher will make recommendations based on the review in three weeks, the report says. DeFleur is planning to resign in the summer. Needless to say, this year's version of March Madness isn't exactly what Binghamtom had in mind.