San Diego’s basketball program didn’t have long to enjoy finishing .500 in West Coast Conference play for the first time in a decade.
The arrest of head coach Lamont Smith quickly squelched that momentum.
Smith was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence Sunday at Oakland International Airport as he and his team prepared to return home after a road win at San Francisco the previous night, 10News in San Diego reported. He faces charges of domestic violence, assault with force likely to commit great bodily injury and false imprisonment as a result of an alleged incident on Saturday night at the team’s San Francisco hotel.
Whether Smith will coach his team in next weekend’s WCC tournament is not yet clear. A San Diego spokesman provided a statement from the university on Sunday night when Yahoo Sports reached out seeking comment.
“We are aware of the report of allegations related to Lamont Smith,” the statement said. “We have very few details at this time but will be gathering information and commencing an immediate review of the matter.”
Smith, a former assistant coach at Saint Mary’s, Arizona State and New Mexico among other places, is in his third season as the head coach at San Diego. The Toreros improved from nine wins in his debut season to 13 last season to 18 entering their WCC tournament quarterfinal against BYU on Saturday night.
Among San Diego’s notable victories this season included a home win over BYU earlier this month and non-conference victories at Colorado, New Mexico State and Grand Canyon. The defense-oriented Toreros also put a scare into WCC champion Gonzaga last Thursday before falling 77-72.
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