It's been a whirlwind of a day. I was able to talk with former Miner Myron Strong about his dismissal from UTEP's basketball team earlier today. I offered Myron the opportunity to use this site as a forum to let the fans know his side of the story and he decided to do so.
Tomorrow, we'll take a step back, take a deep breath, and properly assess the insanity of what occurred today at UTEP. Tonight. I thought it was only fair to give a former Miner, a guy we all cheered for and supported, a chance to tell us, in his own words, what happened to lead to his dismissal from the team. Some of Myron's comments are very surprising and even shocking. Myron was very candid, and he touches on a lot of significant issues to Miner basketball.
Like always, I welcome any feedback from the Miner Nation on this issue.
Miner Rush: What happened to lead to your dismissal? Can you describe what went down in your own words?
Myron Strong: First all, Tim Floyd stereotyped me from Day 1, not knowing anything about me. The reason I was supposedly kicked off the team was due to a violation of dorm rules. I wasn't supposed to be in the dorms so they say, but to my understanding I only couldn't live in the dorms. The coaching in college isn't fair to me. You know coaches are gonna bring in who they want to bring in. I only failed one drug test at UTEP. The first couple days Tim Floyd came to UTEP he tested our squad and the majority of the team failed.
He told me he had a guard who he wanted to bring in so he used any excuse he could to get rid of me. You can ask anybody who knows me or has ever been around me about me as a person and they will tell you I'm a good person and since day 1 Tim Floyd judged me to be this bumb basically.
Miner Rush: You claim a majority of the team failed a drug test. Can you elaborate?
Myron Strong: As far as the drug test, I'm not giving any names but if I got kicked out because of that, that's just plain out wrong because I wasn't the only person who failed. He wanted me out so he did anything in his power to do so. My senior year at that. I never wanted to leave UTEP and plus I failed a drug test months ago, so why am I now all of a sudden off the team? I don't get Tim Floyd at all. He's trying to basically ruin my image
Miner Rush: How were you told that you were no longer a part of the team?
Myron Strong: I received a call from Tim Floyd discussing a possible drug violation which I'm clearly not guilty of. I really don't think it was fair at all. Tim floyd told me out of his own mouth in a meeting I had with him that if he even heard my name in anything that he was gonna put me off. I figured that I was gonna get put off either way he could of possible found. So basically I'm out of UTEP because I was at the dorms from my understanding.
He came straight to UTEP talking badly about Derrick Caracter and Arnette Moultrie as a person and player to us which was very inappropriate. He told them not to try out for NBA or they will not have a scholarship. That is the reason Arnette left.
Miner Rush: Can you elaborate?
Myron Strong: Our first meeting as a team when Floyd came, DC wasn't present. He said DC wasn't gonna be nothing in life and that he not gonna make it to the NBA basically mad because he was leaving. He told Arnette that if he went and worked out for any teams that his scholarship at UTEP was gonna be gone. That's the reason Arnette left.
MR: Are you surprised that Coach Floyd would tell a reporter about these alleged drug violations? Do you think it was appropriate for him to do so?
Myron Strong: No I don't think that was appropriate at all. I would suggest the NCAA look back into his allegations at USC because I'm sure he broke many rules like most coaches in college basketball does. I'm not saying all coaches but most. They preach to us to do the right thing but they are the ones breaking the rules. we players basically get used by coaches so they could benefit financially. And what are we left with? Nothing at all and they just move on with their lives leaving us with stressful situations like new coaches coming in. If I could do it over I probably wouldn't have ever signed with UTEP and I knew when Floyd came in there were gonna be problems
Miner Rush: I read you are thinking about playing for Victory University in Memphis. Is that the plan?
Myron Strong: As far as next year I will play at Azusa Pacific in California or Victory U, I haven't decided yet.
Miner Rush: Is there anything, any comment you'd like to make to UTEP fans?
Myron Strong: I would have loved to play my last year at UTEP I love that enviornment and the fans who supported us.
I understand there are two sides to every story. I gave UTEP a copy of the Strong interview and asked for comment, but have not yet received a response. Of course, if the athletic department has a comment, I will gladly post it here. For now, we for the first time have some insight on a variety of issues.
Myron, first of all, claims that a majority of UTEP basketball players failed a drug test, not just him, but that he is the only Miner to be dismissed because of it.
Then, he claims that Tim Floyd told Arnett Moultrie that if he tried out for NBA squads that he would lose his scholarship with the team. Again, Strong claims Moultrie was told he would lose his scholarship merely if he tested the waters, not if he hired an agent.
He also claims that Tim Floyd insulted former Miners Derrick Caracter and Arnett Moultire in the presence of the current team in a way the players felt was inappropriate.
It's been a long day in Utepia. Today I intended to spend the day berating Memphis for actively recruiting Trevor Mbakwe. It was supposed to be a slow, summer day, one where we could talk a little football and continue our countdown to September 4, 2010. For the first time in a very long time, I really wish today had been a slow news day.