On the heels of misdemeanor charges being filed, VCU has suspended senior guard Briante Weber, according to a statement released by the University on Friday evening.
“Briante has failed to live up to the standards we’ve set for our program and we are holding him accountable,” VCU men’s basketball coach Shaka Smart said in a statement. “Part of his discipline includes missed competition. We expect that Briante will act according to the standards of our program moving forward.”
According to court records, Weber stole an iPhone 5 on July 24. His arraignment today resulted in his suspension, and will continue on to September 25, when Weber is expected back in court.
On the court, Weber is a defensive monster. The two-time defensive player of the year led the nation in steals last season with 3.5 per game and holds records for the conference single-season and school’s career steals already.
The length of his suspension will carry through the team’s opening game against Tennessee, but Weber will also be subject to the Student Code of Conduct from the University itself.
Shaka Smart’s VCU squad went 26-9 last season before a first-round upset to Stephen F. Austin. However, with Treveon Graham set to return with Weber and the addition of ESPN’s 14th-ranked recruiting class, VCU is expected to contend once again this season. Four-star recruits Terry Larrier (SF), Mike Gilmore (PF), and Justin Tillman (PF) can likely contribute right away, especially defensively, where Smart has made a name for himself.
Weber’s suspension will certainly have an effect on the squad, but it is unlikely to last long and considering the easiness of early-season schedules, it shouldn’t effect the Rams too significantly.