Former Sheldon High School basketball star Marcus Bagley took to social media Sunday to reveal the reason Arizona State coach Bobby Hurley benched him for the past five games.
Bagley addressed the issue on Twitter, admitting he “made a mistake” and said things he “shouldn’t have said” to Hurley following a Nov. 10 game against Northern Arizona.
“I usually don’t address locker room situations to media but for some reason people aren’t being transparent,” Bagley tweeted. “To my fans & friends that are concerned, the reason I’m not playing has NOTHING to do with basketball or my ability.
“After my last game I played vs. NAU, out of frustration I made a mistake and said some things to Coach Hurley that I shouldn’t have said. Me not playing is 100% punishment for what I said that day. Again I am 100% healthy, & eager to play.”
Bagley, the younger brother of former Sacramento Kings and current Detroit Pistons forward Marvin Bagley III, was named The Sacramento Bee’s co-Player of the Year in 2019 after averaging 19.9 points and 7.9 rebounds for Sheldon.
Bagley has appeared in only two games this season for the Sun Devils (6-1), who beat Alcorn State 75-64 on Sunday to win their fourth in a row. Their winning streak includes wins over Virginia Commonwealth and then-No. 20 Michigan.
Bagley averaged 12.5 points and 4.0 rebounds in his team’s first two games. He was ruled out for the next game due to a hip pointer and did not travel with the Sun Devils for their next three games. Bagley rejoined the team for blowout home wins over Grambling and Alcorn State, but he did not play.
Bagley was limited to a total of 14 games over his first two seasons with the Sun Devils due to injuries. Hurley, who played for the Kings from 1993-98, referred to injuries when he was asked about his decision to sit Bagley following Tuesday’s 80-49 victory over Grambling.
“I’ve had a really good couple of games and guys playing well, and our perimeter is really playing at a high level and I wasn’t going to disrupt anything tonight,” Hurley said.
“… I’ve been kind of consistent with saying that. I think the last two years, not 100% excuses, but a lot of it, we were sidetracked with key injuries for two years, so when you’re building a roster, you’re saying, ‘Well, let’s not allow that to happen again,’ so let’s make sure that we can sustain not having one guy or two guys because there’s multiple guys that can help us. And I think it promotes a real competitive environment where guys have to be productive if they want their role to expand, and you have to earn minutes, and nothing’s going to be handed to you.”