Mississippi State has opened basketball practice in preparation for their European trip next week. However, when the Bulldogs took to the court yesterday they were short one Renardo Sidney.
State's talented big man has opted to return to Houston to continue his work with John Lucas and forgo the opportunity to play with his teammates in their five games overseas.
"Renardo Sidney has returned to Houston , Texas , to continue working out with John Lucas," said MSU head coach Rick Stansbury in a press release. "He will not accompany the team to Europe next month, but he is expected back on campus for the start of the fall semester in mid-August."
Sidney, who averaged 14.2 points per game with 7.6 rebounds last season for MSU, spent several weeks at the Lucas camp this summer where he lost weight and gained a sense of maturity he lacked last season. And while State will certainly miss Sidney on their trip they will benefit from having him in a situation where he can train without NCAA limitations. If he were with the team he would have been limited in the amount of practice time and conditioning he would be allowed to participate in per NCAA regulations.
The Bulldogs fully expect their star center to return this fall as they prepare to return to championship form this season.