Keith Coleman, a 6-10 center who started 16 games for North Texas this season, is no longer a member of the Mean Green program, coach Tony Benford confirmed Wednesday afternoon.
Benford indicated that Coleman violated team policies, leading to his departure, but declined to detail those violations.
Coleman, who would have been a senior next fall, averaged 3.0 points and 3.4 rebounds per game this season.
“I would like to thank Keith for his contributions to our program and wish him luck in his future endeavors,” Benford said. “We have certain rules, regulations and standards here and expect everyone to abide by them.”
UNT police responded to a criminal trespass complaint Monday at the Mozart Square residence hall involving Coleman, who has an active complaint for the same offense on the property, according to a police report.
Coleman is the second post player to leave the team since the end of the season. Kelvin Gaines, another 6-10 center, left the program to pursue a professional career, forgoing his final season of eligibility.
Armani Flannigan, a 6-8 forward, now is UNT’s tallest player scheduled to return next season.
UNT recently picked up a commitment from 6-7 forward Muhammed Ahmed of Gillette (Wyo.) College. UNT also will add 6-6 forward Jeremy Combs and 6-7 forward Greg Wesley for the 2014-15 season. Wesley sat out last season while working to become academically eligible.
UNT finished 16-16 in its first season in Conference USA and struggled at times to compete in the paint. UNT averaged 2.9 fewer rebounds per game than its opponents in C-USA play and ranked 14th out of 16 teams in rebounding margin in conference games.
Benford says the changes UNT has made to its roster since the end of the season will help the Mean Green address its struggles on the glass, despite the departure of two post players.
Gaines averaged just 1.5 rebounds per game
“I like the way our roster shapes up,” Benford said. “We have guys who are 6-7 to 6-8. That is what you need in this league. We are going to have a post man on the roster, maybe two. We are losing Gaines and Keith, but we are adding some guys who will give us a different look at that position. I want to play up-tempo, push the ball and spread the floor. The versatility we have will help us.”
The departure of Coleman will open up a spot on UNT’s roster. Benford said UNT is actively recruiting and looking to upgrade its talent. The late signing period will begin Wednesday.
BRETT VITO can be reached at 940-566-6870 and via Twitter at @brettvito.