Hamilton loss leaves LSU in lurch 

April, 5, 2012
4/05/12
2:44
PM ET
Player attrition continues to be an issue for the LSU men's basketball program.

When center Justin Hamilton made his surprising announcement Thursday that he was forgoing his senior season at LSU to pursue a professional career, it marked the second year in a row unexpected departures turned positions that looked strong on paper into positions where Tigers coach Trent Johnson has to scramble to come up with an improvised plan.

If the 7-foot Hamilton came back next year, LSU would have had a formidable front line returning with Hamilton, a second-team all-SEC pick this season, and 6-9 sophomore Johnny O'Bryant, both returning starters. Johnson would have had to recruit big men primarily for depth (departed seniors Storm Warren and Malcolm White were the top two options off the bench) and eventual replacements for O'Bryant and Hamilton.

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