Well, Monday night’s contest against Eastern Illinois got a little more interesting, as Marquette announced that junior guard Haanif Cheatham has left the team. The team states that it is for “personal reasons,” which implies that this is not a basketball-related decision by the Florida native.
#mubb Junior guard Haanif Cheatham leaving program for personal reasons, effective immediately. Had started all 5 games, averaging 8.2 pts. & 2.8 reb. in 26.2 minutes per night.— MarquetteMBB (@MarquetteMBB) November 27, 2017
Cheatham has appeared in all 70 games that Marquette has played since his time in Milwaukee began, and he started in the first 58 of them. He lost his starting spot late last season, but had started in all five games of the 2017-18 season so far. Cheatham is averaging career lows of 8.2 points, 2.8 rebounds, and 1.4 assists per game during the current campaign.
With Cheatham’s departure, Marquette is down to eight active scholarship players until Harry Froling becomes eligible after the end of the fall semester. The addition of Froling to the active lineup won’t have much of an impact on Marquette’s guard and wing play, and the burden of filling Cheatham’s 26.2 minutes per game this season so far will fall first on redshirt sophomore Sacar Anim, but also on freshmen Greg Elliott and Jamal Cain.
Whatever Cheatham’s reasons are for leaving the program, we hope that they do not prevent him from returning to a basketball court in the near future, even though his time at Marquette is clearly over. We wish him the best of luck in dealing with whatever is going on in his life at this time.