NCAA grants release to Citadel recruit

The NCAA has granted a release from his letter of intent with The Citadel to high school basketball player Mohammed Kabir of Fort Washington, Md.

Kabir, a 6-5 guard at National Christian Academy, signed with the Bulldogs last fall. He asked for a release from his letter of intent after the “white hoods” photos that emerged at the military school last December.

The photos showed cadets singing Christmas carols while wearing pillowcases that some thought resembled costumes worn by the Ku Klux Klan. Citadel president Lt. Gen. John Rosa called the photos “offensive and disturbing” and suspended the cadets involved.

Kabir requested his release in January, citing the photos.

“It was messed up,” he told the Washington Post at the time. “I talked to my family and my coach about the situation, and it was not a good move for me because this is not the first time something like this has happened at The Citadel.”

Kabir’s recruiting stock rose dramatically after he signed with The Citadel last fall. The native of Nigeria led National Christian to a 30-2 record during his senior season, and was named the most improved player in the D.C. area by the Washington Post.

Despite the loss of Kabir, Citadel coach Duggar Baucom expects to announce a large signing class for 2016 next week.

Two other players — 6-6 forward Ezekiel Balogun and 5-8 guard Frankie Johnson of Darlington — already have signed with the Bulldogs.

Players who have publicly committed to The Citadel include 6-2 guard Chris Ross of Goose Creek; 6-3 guard Aaron Washington; 6-6 forward Tyler Burgess; 6-7 forward Obinna Ofodile; and 6-3 guard Kaelon Harris.

Citadel players Connor Schroeder and Qwandell Newton have been granted permission to seek transfers.