East Lansing — Michigan State basketball coach Tom Izzo said on Wednesday that juniors Eron Harris and Alvin Ellis III will travel with the team on its trip to Italy but neither will play in games.
Both will also lose the use of their cars and are taking part in ongoing community service.
Harris, a transfer from West Virginia who sat out last season, pleaded guilty to reckless driving this month after he was pulled over and charged with operating while intoxicated on July 1. Ellis twice this offseason has been cited for being a minor in possession of alcohol.
“We had a couple knuckleheads that I’ve had to deal with this summer,” Izzo said before the team practiced. “It’s been something that’s really bothered me, and so I’ve kind of hemmed and hawed. I waited until the legal system took its action, which was finally about two weeks ago, so that I could make sure what I’m doing is consistent.
“We’re gonna take them to Italy, we’re not gonna play them in Italy. We’ve got a huge community service thing they gotta do … and then we’re doing a couple other things. … A lot of people will be questioning why they’re not missing games and this and that. I’m trying to stick to the same philosophy I’ve had for other people that have gone through some issues. What happened in June, I’m not gonna rehash in November. So between the trip and the ability to do some community service – and that’ll happen in October.
"There will be a different set of circumstances, but it’s pretty consistent with what I’ve done with other guys in the past.”
Michigan State leaves Friday for Italy, where it will play four exhibition games while also spending time in class and traveling that will earn them one credit.