Bench players help Texas A&M men's basketball team win fifth straight

Texas A&M's TJ Starks, right, tries to shoot around Marshall's Jannson Williams during the first half Saturday at Reed Arena.

Texas A&M junior guard TJ Starks has left the team and entered the transfer portal, according to a team spokesperson. 

Starks had been serving an indefinite suspension after a Nov. 14 arrest for possession of marijuana. 

“We appreciate all that TJ gave our program during his time here and wish him the absolute best going forward,” head coach Buzz Williams said in a statement. 

During a traffic stop, police found two grams of marijuana in three baggies stored inside Starks' car, according to the police statement. Possession of two ounces or less of marijuana is a Class B misdemeanor, punishable by no more than 180 days in jail and a fine not to exceed $2,000.

Starks was suspended later that day and was asked by Williams to go to class, study hall and tutoring and check back in with the coach a week later. 

“He said he had been doing all of those things,” Williams said Monday.

The 6-foot-2 guard had missed the Aggies' first two games because of an ankle sprain he suffered in A&M's exhibition victory over Texas A&M-Kingsville on Nov. 1. 

With freshman guard Andre Gordon sidelined for an indefinite amount of time recovering from a foot injury, Starks’ departure leaves the Aggies thin at point guard. Walk-on senior Mark French started for the Aggies last Wednesday against Troy. 

Starks, a preseason second-team All-Southeastern Conference pick for the 2018-19 season, finished with a team-high 94 assists, and was third in scoring, averaging 12.3 points per game. In his career at A&M, the Lancaster native averaged 11 points and 2.8 assists per game. 

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