Missouri State guard Ronnie Rousseau III to step away from basketball

Ronnie Rousseau III (middle) has been away from the Missouri State men's basketball team since January 7th due to personal reasons. (Header: Missouri State Bears)
Ronnie Rousseau III (middle) has been away from the Missouri State men’s basketball team since January 7th due to personal reasons. (Header: Missouri State Bears)

SPRINGFIELD, MO. — Ever since his arrival on campus, Ronnie Rousseau III had been a big piece of the rotation for the Missouri State Bears in 2016-17.

He transferred to the Bears from State Fair Community College, where he averaged 23.2 points per game as a sophomore, earning him NCJAA Division I Second Team All-American honours in the process. Along with the likes of Alize Johnson, the Bears landed some talented jUCO transfers for this season.

Back on January 4th, it was announced that Rousseau III wouldn’t play in the Bears’ game against the Illinois State Redbirds due to an ankle injury. Three days later, Rousseau III left the team due to personal reasons, and returned to Cincinnati, OH to be with his family.

After a three-week absence from the team, it was announced on Monday that Rousseau III was stepping away from the game of basketball.

“Ronnie has bee a joy to coach since the day he set foot on our campus, and our program will miss him greatly,” said head coach Paul Lusk, in a release posted on the Bears’ website. “But those things are secondary to someone’s health and overall wellbeing.”

“We know he needs his family near him right now, and we support his decision.”

Rousseau III started in 14 games for the Bears this season, and averaged 11.6 points and 2.9 assists per game. He was a key piece of the Bears’ back court this season, alongside senior guard Dequon Miller.

“Missouri State has been home since day one,” said Rousseau, in a statement released by Missouri State. “I love my coaches and my brothers on the team. They’ve been nothing but a pleasure to be with every day.

“I appreciate the opportunity I was given to play for such a great university, and I appreciate everyone’s support for me.”

Missouri State returns to action on Tuesday night, and the Bears will look to bounce back from back-to-back overtime losses when they take on the Loyola (IL) Ramblers.

– T. Bennett