The Instagram post by Villanova freshman guard Jahvon Quinerly showing his dissatisfaction over a lack of playing time was “the normal frustration of a young kid that’s used to playing a lot, and not playing,” according to Wildcats head coach Jay Wright.
Wright said Wednesday he had a conversation with Quinerly, who came to Villanova as a consensus top-10 high school point guard in various national rankings. He said Quinerly apologized for the post, which was seen after the Wildcats’ 78-75 loss to Penn on Tuesday night.
“We look at it as a good teaching moment,” Wright said. “He was emotional about playing time and then he took [the post] down immediately, apologized. Today, we talked about it, and he feels really bad about it. It’s a learning experience. We all know he’s a good kid, so it’s not an issue that concerns us. We accept his apology.”
Quinerly has played in eight of the Wildcats’ first 11 games. His frustration appeared to boil over Tuesday night after he played a total of five seconds late against Penn, leading to the Instagram post.
“Was my 2nd choice for a reason,” he wrote under the handle “jelllyjq.”
Quinerly publicly apologized on Thursday, saying he regrets what he said and that he learned about the “power and reach of social media and the impact of having an impulsive reaction in a public forum."
The 6-foot Quinerly, a five-star recruit out of Hudson Catholic High School in North Jersey, originally committed to Arizona but reopened his recruitment before the start of his senior season after the assistant coach who recruited him was arrested in a federal investigation into corruption in college basketball.
Quinerly made a commitment to Villanova last February and signed a national letter of intent in April. He had been expected to be in the mix as Wright looked for a successor to national player of the year Jalen Brunson at point guard.
Wright said Quinerly is showing progress in adjusting to the ways of Villanova basketball.
“I do see progress,” he said. “It’s not easy. He’s had a couple of injuries. He’s in a situation where learning how to be a point guard in our program has been challenging. But he’s worked hard at it, he really has, and he continues to work. He has been a great teammate.”
Wright also said he wasn’t concerned that Quinerly will transfer.
“You always worry about that, but I don’t worry about that in his case, I really don’t,” he said. “You worry about all the kids. You want to make sure everybody’s happy. Jahvon wants to play more, but he’s very happy at Villanova.”
The day after Quinerly apologized to Wright
Quinerly is averaging 2.4 points in 8.6 minutes. His best game came on Nov. 22 against Canisius when he had nine points, three rebounds and two assists in 15 minutes. He stayed on the bench in games against Furman and Florida State and did not play against Temple because of what was described as an “upper extremity injury.”