As bad as Bo Ryan looked when he initially made the decision to restrict Jarrod Uthoff from transferring to 26 schools and as foolish as he looked when he went on ‘Mike and Mike’, his story and his reasoning, while unfair, was at least plausible.
The reason he put all those restrictions on Uthoff was because he wanted the former Wisconsin Badger to speak to him about what happened, about what had changed between the time he had committed to Wisconsin and the moment he finally decided he was leaving. Given that Ryan has since released Uthoff to any school outside of the Big Ten, it plants the seeds of doubt: maybe this really was Ryan’s plan all along?
Well, if you listen to what Uthoff said about it, you may disagree.
“The thing is, if he wanted me to explain that, he could have just called me into his office to explain it to him,” Uthoff told Jesse Temple of FOXSportsWisconsin. “He didn’t have to restrict the schools. If he wanted me to explain why I wanted to go to all the schools that he was going to restrict, all he would have had to do was call me into his office, and I would be more than willing to go into his office.
“He was my coach for a year. I thought we had a pretty good relationship. I would have been more than willing to come into his office and explain why I would want to go to each school. So I’m not really sure about that. If he blocked the schools, then I would have to explain it to the AD and the sports administrator — not him. If he wanted the rationale, he could have just called me into his office.”
There’s more. From FOXSportsWisconsin:
“I had been thinking about it and made a decision when I hadn’t had a chance to see him,” Uthoff said. “I wanted to do this in person.”
When he called Ryan with a decision April 9, he hoped it would speed up the transfer process to look at other schools. The spring signing period for high school seniors began April 11.
“The longer you wait, the less opportunities you have because there’s always people committing and signing,” Uthoff said. “I wanted to make a decision to wherever I transfer by the summer.”
Uthoff, who met with assistant coach Gary Close in the following days, said he thought he would hear from Ryan on Saturday, April 14. But he was surprised to learn that he was granted his transfer release on Thursday, April 12 via email from an athletic department member, without speaking to Ryan. He was further surprised that the email contained a list of 26 schools restricted by Ryan: the entire Big Ten and ACC, plus Iowa State, Marquette and Florida.
Uthoff is scheduled to visit Creighton on Monday.
Would anyone else find it incredibly ironic if, after all of this drama, Uthoff ends up transferring to a school that wasn’t even on his restricted list?