COLUMBIA - For the second time this season, South Carolina men's basketball coach Frank Martin is in trouble after a vulgar interaction with a player.
Martin was suspended Thursday from his team's regular season finale at Mississippi State for "inappropriate verbal communication" with a player during Tuesday's loss to No. 1 Florida. He will not travel Saturday to Starkville, Miss.
"The one-game suspension is a result of inappropriate verbal communication as it relates to the well-being of our student-athletes," athletics director Ray Tanner said in the statement.
Tanner offered no further explanation for Martin's suspension in the release. Martin was replaced Thursday night by assistant coach Perry Clark on Carolina Calls, a weekly call-in radio show.
"All parties have nothing more to add at this time, and as such it was agreed upon earlier that Frank Martin would not appear on tonight's show," Carolina Calls host and play-by-play announcer Andy Demetra said on the radio. "We certainly understand the interest, folks, and the opinions this decision has elicited, but we won't be taking any phone calls on the subject tonight either. Again, all parties have nothing more to add, and there's really nothing we can add to that."
ESPNU cameras caught Martin directing profanity at freshman guard Duane Notice during a timeout midway through the second half of South Carolina's loss Tuesday against No. 1 Florida at Colonial Life Arena.
It was the second time Martin has been caught using profanity toward a player this season. In January, he apologized following an altercation with senior guard Brenton Williams during a one-point home loss to Ole Miss.
"I got after Brent pretty darn good on the sideline in the first half and I visited with him about it and apologized to him," Martin said then. "I do want to apologize to any fans that were behind the bench and maybe heard what was said. I was wrong for that and there's no excuse for it."
Martin was not suspended following his apology in January.
Associate head coach Matt Figger will serve as acting head coach as the Gamecocks (11-19, 4-13 SEC) attempt to surpass last season's SEC win total.
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