ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Both a local UAlbany men’s basketball commit and a community leader spoke with News10 Saturday, reacting to the suspension of UAlbany head coach Dwayne Killings.

The university announced Saturday that following an investigation, they found Killings made “inappropriate physical contact” with a player before the team’s road game against Eastern Illinois on November 24th. Killings has been suspended for five games of the 2022-2023 season, to go along with a $25,000 fine. The fine will be donated to a local non-profit.

Amsterdam native Marcus Jackson announced his commitment to UAlbany last week. He tells News10 he’s still committed to play for his hometown team. He added he’s talked with multiple players on the UAlbany basketball team, as well as an assistant coach. “The vibe I got from it was really just take a step back and just don’t overreact and everything will be fine,” said Jackson. He added, “I think the faith the players had in coach Killings was never affected. I think spending that much time with a coach, or even with any human, I think you just get to learn how genuine people are and I think coach Killings is definitely that.”

On Thursday, a group of local community leaders gathered to show their support for Killings. One of those leaders was Marcus Pryor. When asked Saturday what he would say to someone who might be hesitant to welcome Killings back after this incident, Pryor said, “I think having the opportunity to understand the context a little better, that coupled with the clear track record that we have of coach’s success, his integrity, it wasn’t difficult to gather support for him. People rallied around him very quickly.”

News10ABC reached out to both Killings and the university regarding the matter and has received no comment.

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