By Parrish Alford/NEMS Daily Journal
ATLANTA – A possible altercation was avoided when assistant coaches and security separated Ole Miss forward Reggie Buckner and Kentucky’s DeAndre Liggins as the teams walked to their respective locker rooms following the Rebels’ 75-66 loss in the SEC tournament Friday.
A witness said Liggins approached Buckner from behind as the teams neared the tunnel. The players were initially separated but began talking again after walking a few steps farther.
No punches were thrown.
All teams follow the same path to dressing areas as the Georgia Dome.
Buckner had little to say about it after the game. Locker rooms are open at the SEC tournament, unlike following regular-season games.
Before Buckner started dressing, he was taken into a separate room by Ole Miss media relations director Kyle Campbell.
When asked about the incident, Buckner said, “I really don’t know. I don’t remember what happened after the game.”
He was silent when asked if someone said something to him.
Liggins told a member of the Kentucky media, “I might’a said something.”
– Ole Miss athletics director Pete Boone said he expects Andy Kennedy to be the Rebels’ coach again next season.
The Rebels fell short of the NCAA tournament again and expect to receive an NIT bid for the fourth time under Kennedy. If the university chose to buy out the remainder of his contract it would owe him $3.9 million. Kennedy is in the first year of a $1.3 million a year deal.
Boone and Kennedy, as they do each year, will review the season and discuss the future once the season is complete.
“I’m not sure what he’ll want to do, but I think he’s made a lot of progress,” Boone said. “There is progress that has been made and is going to be made.”
Boone said he does not anticipate a contract extension for Kennedy before some of that progress is realized.
“My thoughts are that we’ll put some incentives that it could be extended if they are achieved next year. I’d rather just stop it at that, because I don’t want to really talk about his contract before I talk to him about it,” Boone said.
No NCAAs for Warren
– Senior guard Chris Warren will be remembered for a lot of things in his college career, but the NCAA tournament will not be one of them.
Warren will play at least one more game and will need just two points to reach 2,000 for his career at Ole Miss.
If he gets there he’ll join LSU’s Pete Maravich, Tennessee’s Allan Houston and Georgia’s Litterial Green as the only SEC players to compile 2,000 points and 400 assists in a career.
Warren didn’t have much to say about another go with the NIT.
“You live with it, and whatever comes your way, you play,” he said.
– “I was really happy the game was close, because we need this. We will be in others that are close. We had to see what men would step up and make plays.” – Kentucky coach John Calipari
Contact Parrish Alford at 678-1600 or firstname.lastname@example.org.