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Monday, August 30, 2010
Ater Majok could leave Connecticut

By Eamonn Brennan

Ater Majok came to UConn with a lot of hype. He has not lived up to any of it. Instead, after a long and arduous recruiting process -- involving an NCAA inquiry, a long eligibility process, a pipe-dream early entry in the 2009 NBA draft and a few five-star rankings mixed in for good measure -- Majok has played in a mere 26 games, averaging 2.3 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.6 blocks per game. Needless to say, Huskies fans were hoping for more. A lot more.

Now, after all that, it appears Majok might be ending his college career before it really has a chance to start. The Hartford Courant is hearing that from multiple sources, in fact, as it appears Majok could leave the Huskies in the next few days in order to pursue a professional career in Australia. From the Courant:
Ater Majok's playing career at UConn has likely ended, multiple sources have told The Courant. Coach Jim Calhoun said that is a distinct possibility, but not a done deal.

"We're talking to Ater about his future, yeah," Calhoun said. "That's all I can say. … He hasn't made any decision yet, but he could certainly go back and play in the Australian professional league. Nothing's been determined yet, but there's a chance that kind of thing could happen."

Majok came to the U.S. from Australia. He is originally from the Sudan and spent time in Egypt as a child. According to the Courant, Majok's large family -- which fled the Sudan during the country's genocidal civil war -- is back in the country, and Majok considers them his responsibility.

Still, the decision would come as a surprise. This July, Majok said he couldn't envision a scenario that would cause him to leave UConn early. He also said he felt settled at the school, that he was ready for the three years of college hoops ahead of him. According to the Courant, Majok posted on his Twitter page that "life can take unexpected turns.. there is nothing i can do about it all i can do is keep my head up and keep working hard..." That's the right attitude. But I'm betting UConn fans -- who desperately needed Majok to live up to his outsized expectations -- will be somewhat less forgiving in their appraisals.