Busting Brackets

Georgia Tech Basketball: Okogie and Jackson suspended

ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 07: Josh Okogie
ATLANTA, GA - JANUARY 07: Josh Okogie /

Georgia Tech basketball was supposed to be on the rise but stars Tadric Jackson and Josh Okogie have been suspended indefinitely.

On Nov. 2, news outlets broke that head coach Josh Pastner and the Georgia Tech basketball program have self-reported violations regarding benefits given to their top players.

In a detailed report by Ken Sugiura of the Atlantic Journal-Constitution, both Tadric Jackson and Josh Okogie received food, clothes, and transportation totaling over $1,000 combined. These players will not be playing in any games while the NCAA finishes its investigation and makes a decision on the players’ eligibility.

As mentioned by Sugiura, a number of benefits received will factor into the length of the suspensions, which likely won’t be more than ten games for either player. That means they’ll miss key non-conference games including the team’s first game, which comes against UCLA in China. In addition, they could miss bouts against Northwestern, Georgia, and Tennessee.

The losses of the two of the top three scorers from a year ago is huge. For a team who at times struggled to score already, losing Jackson and Okogie as two of the best offensive options is huge. That leaves Ben Lammers alone down low to score, but even he is more of a defensive wizard than an offensive star. While the NCAA does take absences into account, the margin of error (which was already thin) has now shrunk to zero. Bad losses before conference play are now likely to happen.

Next: Georgia Tech 2017-18 preview

It’s disappointing for these two players in particular. Jackson has an opportunity to finish his career with the Yellow Jackets in the NCAA tournament. As for Okogie, we’ve talked about the next steps for the upcoming star in the league, and that primetime game against the Bruins would’ve been a great coming out party for the more casual fans. When they return they better come out guns blazing, otherwise this season will be lost before the start of the new calendar year.