Texas A&M guard JJ Caldwell suspended for five games

In News by Blake Lovell

Texas A&M point guard J.J. Caldwell has been suspended for the team’s first five games of the 2017-18 season.

According to a report by ESPN’s Jeff Goodman, Caldwell’s suspension is due to a violation of university policy.

Caldwell, the No. 89 overall player in ESPN’s Top 100 for the 2016 recruiting class, was forced to sit out last season after being ruled ineligible.

The Aggies will open the season against West Virginia on November 10.

The game will be played at Ramstein Air Base in Germany.

Lovell’s Analysis

It has not been a good week for SEC basketball.

It all started with Tuesday’s bombshell that rocked the college basketball world, with Auburn assistant coach Chuck Person being one of the coaches charged by the FBI.

Then came the resignation of Alabama associate athletic director Kobie Baker.

And now today, we’ve seen highly talented Kentucky freshman Jarred Vanderbilt be ruled out for at least three months due to injury and Caldwell ruled out for five games due to suspension.

But let’s focus on the Caldwell one.

I’ve talked all offseason about how important Caldwell will be to a Texas A&M team that struggled mightily at the point guard position last season.

The Aggies could never find their way due to not having a consistent point presence, so Caldwell missing the first five games isn’t ideal, especially considering that West Virginia is the opening day opponent.

Marquette transfer Duane Wilson should step in and take on a larger role during Caldwell’s absence.

Admon Gilder, who was forced to play away from his natural position at shooting guard in order to help out at point last season, will also be an option for Billy Kennedy.

As for when Caldwell returns? It should be the team’s final game of the Legends Classic.

However, after that, things get much stronger as two of the Aggies’ next three games will come against potential top five teams in USC and Arizona.

So while the wait has been a long one for Texas A&M fans, they’ll immediately find out just how big of an impact Caldwell could have once he steps on the court.

Blake Lovell is the founder of Southeast Hoops. He hosts the Marching to Madness podcast, which features interviews with coaches around the country. He also hosts a weekly college basketball show on WNSR 560AM/95.9 FM in Nashville. His work has been featured in The New York Times, Athlon Sports, Rivals, FanRag Sports, and many more.