LSU G Smart cleared for SEC Tournament

Big Tournament
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LSU guard Javonte Smart (1) drives to the basket while defended by Florida guard Jalen Hudson (3) during the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Gainesville, Fla., Wednesday, March 6, 2019. (AP Photo/Gary McCullough)

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) LSU guard Javonte Smart will play for in the Southeastern Conference Tournament after missing the Tigers’ regular-season finale because his name surfaced in reports of a wiretapped phone call that resulted in coach Will Wade’s suspension.

School officials say Smart has fully cooperated in a “joint inquiry” with LSU and the NCAA. The top-seeded and ninth-ranked Tigers face Florida in an SEC quarterfinal Friday.

School officials say they haven’t found any wrongdoing by the freshman guard, though the inquiry isn’t closed. LSU officials say Smart was held out of the Tigers’ 80-59 victory over Vanderbilt on Saturday “out of an abundance of caution.”

Wade has been suspended since published excerpts were reported last week of Wade’s phone conversations with a person convicted last year of funneling money to the families of basketball recruits.

Wade hasn’t spoken to university or NCAA officials about the reports.

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