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Wednesday, July 13, 2011
Taran Buie faces theft charges

By Eamonn Brennan

Back in April, when Penn State coach Ed DeChellis (never forget!) released troubled point guard Taran Buie, the reasons for the release were never exactly clear. Sure, Buie hadn't been an ideal citizen. He was suspended for much of the season and had been cited by police twice last summer and once this spring, and his half-brother, PSU legend Talor Battle, said Buie "would have gotten in trouble wherever he went."

Was there anything else? Were drinking tickets and a fighting citation enough to warrant the total dismissal of a talented guard from a team that desperately needed him?

Apparently not. According to the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Buie will face arraignment in State College, Pa., Wednesday on charges of misdemeanor theft and receiving stolen property. According to a Centre Daily Times report, authorities say Buie took a smartphone from a campus party in February and, in a separate incident, failed to report to police a phone he found in a cab.

The charges are more of the minor and dumb -- rather than the major and egregious -- varieties, but they are the most potent examples to date of how immature and foolish Buie has been in his first year of collegiate hoops. Buie has verbally committed to transfer to Hofstra. Is that transfer now at risk? And if not, is Buie willing to change his behavior at his new school? A suspension is one thing. Stealing a smartphone is another. Eventually, this stuff piles up.