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SDSU forward Zylan Cheatam announces transfer

Redshirt+sophomore+forward+Zylan+Cheatham+attacks+the+basket+against+University+of+San+Diego.
Redshirt sophomore forward Zylan Cheatham attacks the basket against University of San Diego.

Redshirt sophomore forward Zylan Cheatham attacks the basket against University of San Diego.

Kelly Smiley, Photo Editor

Kelly Smiley, Photo Editor

Redshirt sophomore forward Zylan Cheatham attacks the basket against University of San Diego.

Tony Zarate, Staff Writer

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Only three days after his announcement as new head coach of the men’s basketball team, Brian Dutcher announced sophomore forward Zylan Cheatham will not be returning to San Diego State.

After a meeting with each of the players, Cheatham expressed to Dutcher that he would like to explore other schools to play basketball.

“We appreciate all Zylan has brought to this university, both in the classroom, as he is a very good student, and on the basketball court, for his contributions to the success of the program,” Dutcher said. “We wish him well in his pursuit at another university.”

Since the SDSU men’s basketball team is losing playmaking seniors such as Dakarai Allen and Matthew Shrigley, Cheatham was expected to be one the leaders on the team along with junior forward Malik Pope.

“I want to thank everyone at the university for giving me the opportunity to play Division I basketball,” Cheatham said. “I appreciate the support the coaching staff and team has shown me during my time at San Diego State and in helping me along my process of going from a boy to a man.”

The Phoenix native came to Montezuma Mesa before the start of the 2014-2015 season. However, due to an ongoing foot injury, this forced the four-star recruit to redshirt his first year at SDSU. During his redshirt freshman campaign, Cheatham averaged 7.6 points per game as well as racking up 36 assists in 38 games.

In his second, and final, season wearing the Scarlet and Black, the redshirt sophomore forward averaged 9.1 points on a 51.9 percent clip and a team-best 6.3 rebounds along with 43 assists in 31 games, including 22 starts.

Finishing out his last year as an Aztec, Cheatham was not able to boost his team out of the semi-finals of the Mountain West Tournament, losing to Colorado State 71-63.

In his final three games, Cheatham shot an even 50 percent from the field while averaging 7.6 points and five rebounds per game to finish out the season.

Cheatham did not give any indication when talking to the media of where he is looking to play for the upcoming season. Since he already used his redshirt season, he will only have one year of eligibility left at his new school. He can petition the NCAA for a medical waiver for a sixth season of eligibility.

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