EDIT: According to Johnson's statement that was recently released through the university, he will miss the entire upcoming season due to "some very poor judgement."
Vanderbilt basketball may be without its leading scorer in 2013-2014. Junior point guard Kedren Johnson confirmed today that he was no longer enrolled at the university due to disciplinary measures.
In a brief discussion with the Tennessean's Jeff Lockridge, Johnson called the issue a "suspension" and noted that the disciplinary action "is not forever." That suggests that Johnson may be able to take the Jared Morse route and regain his status with the team. Morse, a football player, was dismissed from his team in the offseason, but made the necessary amends to wind up back in coach James Franklin's good graces this summer.
Johnson may have the opportunity to do the same, and Commodore fans everywhere have to be hoping that he will. The rising junior was Vanderbilt's on-court leader and arguably the most talented player on the roster. After playing through a shoulder injury last season, he was primed for a big winter after last season's rebuilding effort.
The news comes of the heels of reports that sophomore Kevin Bright, who emerged as a key starter in his first year at Vandy, will also leave the program in order to play professional basketball in Germany. Bright is a German native who averaged 6.9 points and 5.5 rebounds in 2012-2013. If he leaves, the entirety of Kevin Stallings's 2012 recruiting class will have all left the university after one season.
So if you're keeping track at home, Vanderbilt has potentially lost its three most encouraging young core players in the span of three months. That means that Rod Odom and Kyle Fuller will have their hands full this fall. We'll have more on the story as Johnson and the university release their official statements.
UPDATE: Here is Johnson's letter to the program and its fans, copied from VUCommodores.com:
To My Vanderbilt Family,
As we get closer to starting the new school year, I feel it is my responsibility to inform everyone of some disappointing news. I have been suspended as a student from Vanderbilt University for one year for a mistake I made, the result of using some very poor judgement. That also means I will not be on the basketball team this upcoming season.
It hurts me when I realize the consequences of my action, which happened near the end of the last school year. It was a violation of the good conduct expected of all Vanderbilt students. I take full responsibility and now must begin working to regain the trust and respect of my school, the student body, our fans and especially my coaches and friends on the team. I understand this will take time.
I have let down a lot of people including my own family, Coach Stallings and my teammates. I plan to do everything I can to return to Vanderbilt next year.
While I won't be on the basketball court, I will be the team's biggest fan. I look forward to fulfilling my obligations and regaining my status as a student at this great school.