6-3 Jalek Felton of Mullins and Gray Collegiate had hoped to continue the family legacy at North Carolina created by his uncle Raymond Felton. But his freshman season in Chapel Hill ended abruptly with first a suspension from the team and then a withdrawal from school. Felton is now a collegiate free agent and there are plenty of interested parties.
Dion Bethea is Felton’s former coach at Gray and he said Felton’s mother, uncle and grandfather are handling the contacts from schools, but he knows that USC, Clemson, Texas Tech, East Tennessee State, Illinois and Georgetown are some to reach out. Clemson, however, would be an unlikely choice because of the ACC rule requiring a two year hiatus for transferring within the league.
“He’s just looking for a fresh start,” Bethea said. “I don’t know what happened and I don’t want to ask. But as far as him being able to enroll at a school, I don’t think that’s going to be an issue.”
There’s been no public explanation regarding why North Carolina suspended Felton other than the school was investigating allegations of misconduct which his attorney described to the Raleigh News and Observer as “very serious personal stuff.”
USC attempted to recruit Felton the first time around, but just like his uncle when he was coming out of Latta High School, his heart was set on North Carolina. Bethea expects Frank Martin to be active again with Felton once he gets clarity on the situation.
“I’m pretty sure there’s a lot of interest there,” Bethea said. “I’m pretty sure with any program that he takes a look at and decides on, there will have to be some conversation on what went on. They will want to know, and of course the university will want to know. Once Frank and them get done, I’m pretty they are going to have a conversation and I’m pretty sure they’ll be interested about it.”
Bethea said he does not believe Felton wants to drag out this process for too long and thinks he would like to nail down his new destination this spring.
This season Felton played in 22 games at North Carolina averaging just under 3 points per game.