Woes without Washington

The turning point for this basketball season actually occurred last year, when forward Leonard Washington was unable to academically qualify. After watching him play, it’s hard to overstate just how potent USC would have been with such a physical and downright ornery presence under the basket. He pretty much completed the current USC team, or at least made it capable of beating anyone in the country.
Washington is still trying to qualify with the hope of enrolling at USC next season. But do Washington’s academic issues let Coach Tim Floyd off the hook this season regarding the lack of frontcourt depth? I’ll let you answer that question in the comments. But forward Taj Gibson probably deserves some type of coaches’ award for being put in an often hopeless position this season.
One other thought: Maybe Washington’s absence should not be absolved, because USC seems so attracted to academic risks. Consider how long it took before Davon Jefferson qualified or the sweating done before Angelo Johnson qualified from a prep school. There are other examples but I’ll refrain from listing all of them.
The point is, when you take so many risks, you have to be prepared to get burned sometimes.