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Travis Hanour Leaves Arizona:
Why? Some Clues...--(Oct. 31, 2001)

The news that Travis Hanour had left the University of Arizona began to trickle out last Thursday and Friday.  Since then, there has been some speculation, but not much concrete information about why the move is happening.  We're not sure we can offer any real insights either, but there were some conventional media reports last week which help shed some light on the subject.   First was the official press release from the University of Arizona, which was unusually terse and cryptic.  There were also two newspaper articles we found, which had a bit more information.  So what follows is what we know, and believe us, it isn't much.

Official University of Arizona Press Release:

Travis Hanour Leaves Arizona Men's Basketball Team

Six-foot-6 sophomore guard averaged 3.1 points per game last year.
Oct. 25, 2001

TUCSON, Ariz. - Arizona head men's basketball coach Lute Olson announced Thursday that sophomore Travis Hanour has decided to leave
the program immediately due to personal reasons. 

"Travis Hanour is leaving the program for personal reasons," said Olson. "The coaching staff and team are very disappointed with his decision, but the program will move forward." 

Hanour, a 6-foot-6, 188-pound guard from Laguna Beach, Calif., averaged 3.1 points and 1.4 rebounds, while shooting .339 from the floor in 20 games last season. 

Arizona, the 2001 NCAA Tournament runner-up, opens the 2001-02 season against Maryland on Nov. 8 at the Coaches vs. Cancer IKON Classic in New York, N.Y. The game will be televised by ESPN2.

Tucson, Arizona Friday, 26 October 2001

Hanour latest guard to depart Wildcats
Arizona left with only nine scholarship players

By Bruce Pascoe

Reserve guard Travis Hanour has quit Arizona's basketball team, shrinking the Wildcat roster to just nine scholarship players. 

Hanour, a sophomore from Laguna Beach, Calif., becomes the fourth shooting guard to leave the Wildcats in the past four years over what appears to be playing-time issues. Quynn Tebbs left Arizona for Weber State in the fall of 1998, Traves Wilson transferred to Illinois State in the spring of 1999, and Ruben Douglas went to New Mexico in the fall of 1999. 

Hanour was unavailable for comment, and a UA statement said he left for "personal reasons." But early indications from within the basketball program were that junior Jason Gardner, freshman Salim Stoudamire and freshman Will Bynum will rotate between the two guard positions - leaving Hanour to play off the bench as a shooter. 

Arizona also already has a commitment from Portland (Ore.) guard Chris Rodgers and is heavily recruiting two other wing players for next season, Andre Iguodala and Hassan Adams. 

UA coach Lute Olson declined to comment beyond the school's statement, which quoted him saying the coaching staff and team were "very disappointed with (Hanour's) decision." He cited student-privacy rules and declined to say if Hanour was dismissed for academic or behavioral reasons. 

Hanour's high school coach, Brett Fleming, said Hanour is a good student who lives cleanly. He said he did not think Hanour's overall concern was playing time but did not elaborate fully. 

"This kind of came down to he didn't feel he was happy there," Fleming said. "He didn't make a quick decision. He spent several days thinking about it." 

Fleming said Hanour intends to remain in school at Arizona through the fall semester and has not decided where he might transfer to. 

Arizona now has a total of 13 players in preseason practices, counting two returning walk-ons and two newly added walk-ons: Anas Fellah, a 6-foot freshman point guard from Amphitheater High School; and Phil Torres, a 6-2 junior combination guard from Naperville, Ill. 

The Wildcats are also scheduled to receive the services of tight end/forward Peter Hansen after football season ends. 

Scrimmage rosters set 

The veterans will face the rookies in Sunday's Red-Blue Game, an intrasquad scrimmage set for 3 p.m. at McKale Center. 

Guards Gardner and Jason Ranne; forwards Luke Walton and Rick Anderson and center Andrew Zahn will be on the Blue team. 

The Red team (also known as the "white" team, especially after UA struggled in red uniforms last season) will have Bynum, Stoudamire, forwards Mike Schwertley and Dennis Latimore and center Isaiah Fox. 

Center Channing Frye and the two new walk-ons will play for both teams and Olson said he would change teams at halftime if needed. 

Hanour quits Arizona basketball team

Olson's squad will open the season with just 9 scholarship
players, including 5 freshmen.

Citizen Sportswriter
Oct. 26, 2001
Sophomore guard Travis Hanour's decision to leave the University of Arizona basketball team leaves the Wildcats with "a huge hole," coach Lute Olson says. The squad heads into its Nov. 8 opener against Maryland with only nine scholarship players.

UA has two returning walk-ons and added two more this week, giving it 13 players for Sunday's Red-Blue scrimmage at McKale Center (3 p.m., Fox
Sports Arizona). "The coaching staff and team are very disappointed with his decision, but the program will move forward," Olson said yesterday.
During the team's media day last week, Hanour acknowledged it would be tough competing with the freshmen backcourt duo of Salim Stoudamire and
Will Bynum, who likely will split playing time alongside point guard Jason Gardner.

"I like them a lot," the 6-foot-6 shooting guard said of the freshmen. "They're good guys and good players. It's going to be a fight for playing time."

But Hanour's decision did "not necessarily" come down to a lack of playing time, said Brett Fleming, his coach at Laguna Beach (Calif.) High. "He just didn't feel it was a good fit for him," Fleming said. Projected before preseason practices began as a possible starter, Hanour "just came to the decision he wasn't happy" at UA. Hanour could not be reached for comment. He will remain at UA and attempt to transfer to an undetermined school at the semester break, Fleming said.

Yesterday, discussing Hanour's departure, Olson said he was limited in what he could say because of student privacy rights. Hanour's exit preserves his future playing time. Had he played in a Nov. 4 exhibition game against EA Sports, he would have lost a year's eligibility before transferring. As it stands, he has three more years to play.

As a high school senior, Hanour averaged 25.7 points per game. "He just wanted to make a decision that was best for him," said Fleming, who is no longer the coach at Laguna Beach. Decisions have not come easily for Hanour, a fine shooter with defensive shortcomings. Deciding to attend UA, he ended a commitment to USC. Last winter there was talk that Hanour was thinking of transferring after he missed a couple of practices during the Christmas break. But his delayed return was later blamed on an illness.

Last year, Hanour contributed nicely in a reserve role on one of the nation's most talented teams. He averaged 3.1 points and 1.4 assists in 8.7 minutes a game. But in limited appearances, he hit only 5 of 27 three-pointers (18.5 percent). "It was difficult when you're in there two minutes a game," Hanour said in an interview last week. "A lot of times the games were already over."

Those numbers could have improved because he would have been among the handful of returning players from last season. Like Olson, Gardner said the team would recover in time for the Maryland game two weeks from now in the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic in New York.

"When a decision like this is made, all you can do is move forward," Gardner said.  Gardner said Hanour would have made a big contribution to the team. "Travis is a good player," he said. "I don't know his reasons for leaving. He's a good shooter and an open-court player. But it's his decision."

Arizona now has four scholarships to give for next season.  But Olson said yesterday that he probably won't use the added scholarship, which would bring the team to a full 13-scholarship roster. "My guess is that we likely won't go to the whole 13 next year," Olson said. The Wildcats already have a commitment from Chris Rodgers, a guard from Portland, Ore. Anas Fellah, a 6-foot freshman point guard from Amphitheater High School, and Phil Torres, a 6-2 junior guard from Naperville, Ill., were added to the team this week. They join walk-ons Michael Schwertley and Jason Ranne. UA tight end Peter Hansen also is expected to join the team after football season, which would give UA 14 players in practice.

Citizen Sportswriter Jack Rickard contributed to this story.

Class: Sophomore
Ht., Wt.: 6-6, 188
Hometown: Laguna Beach, Calif.
2000-01 UA statistics: 20 games, 175 minutes, 61 points, .339 field goal percentage, 5-17 on three-pointers.
High school: Averaged 25.7 points, 9.7 rebounds and 5.4 assists per game as a senior at Laguna Beach High School. All-state, all-county and Most Valuable Player in the Pacific Coast League.
Travis Hanour, who has not decided where he will transfer, is the latest
shooting guard to leave UA. The others:
Year New Player left school
Ruben Douglas 1999 New Mexico
Traves Wilson 1999 Illinois State
Quynn Tebbs 1998 Weber State

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