Behanan boot no surprise, just a disappointment - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Behanan boot no surprise, just a disappointment

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Chane Behanan Chane Behanan

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Saying goodbye to Chane Behanan was not the way University of Louisville fans wanted to end the Year of the Cardinal.

Coach Rick Pitino's announcement that Behanan was dismissed from the team for a violation of university rules did not come as a shock to the Cardinal Faithful. They already knew Behanan was treading in some dangerous territory after being suspended earlier this season.

More than anything, most fans were disappointed.

SportsTalk 84 with Lachlan McLean was just one of many places Chane Behanan was being discussed after being kicked off the team Monday. 

"Ultimately he just made really dumb choices and I think the real sad part about this is,"McLean said, "This was a guy who had a bright future."

"I always thought he had a lot of talent, but then all the suspensions," one radio caller said. UofL student Megan Gray said of the news, "It's really sad to hear that he's leaving."

At times the power forward became both a dominate and troubled member of the National Championship team, but after a number of warnings and second chances in his UofL career, Behanan finally punched his ticket out of a Cardinal uniform.

"It's kind of sad, I honestly thought that he would be able to clean it up or they would be able to work it out, but unfortunately that didn't happen," said UofL student Brina Joiner. For fans like Joiner, it's another gut punch paired with the announcement of a likely redshirt for guard Kevin Ware and Saturday's loss for the Cards to archrival Kentucky.

What we heard from many fans may be a little surprising, optimism about the team's future.  Student Ashley Jeter said of Rick Pitino and company, "They're pretty good at bouncing back from most things and I think with the Lexington game, I would rather forget that one, but everything else, I think they'll be able to recover from that pretty good."

Can the Cards make it back to the Final Four without Behanan?

McLean answered, "We've seen Rick Pitino make adjustments on the fly before so as much as I'm tempted to write this team off, you've got to give him a little bit of the benefit of the doubt because they've played guys out of position before and they've had success doing it," he added, "But, for a team that struggles rebounding to lose one of your best rebounders, I can't see how it's not a crucial blow to their post season chances."

In the end, most fans wish Behanan well, but said he had fair warning, got more than a fair shake and it would be far from fair to keep him around now.

"I wish Chane the best," one caller said, "but if you put these guys on scholarship let them earn their scholarship and play."

In a statement, Behanan apologized to his family, his teammates, his coaches, Athletic Director Tom Jurich, the University and it's fans for letting them down.

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