Could immediately-eligible transfers be disappearing soon?


College basketball’s free agency period could be coming to an end.

According to a report from Andy Katz of ESPN.com, the National Association of Basketball Coaches board of directors met last week, and among the rule changes that were discussed were transfers that are allowed to become eligible immediately without having to sit out a season.

There was just a single dissenting vote in the room.

The way the current system is structured, there are two ways that a transfer can gain immediate eligibility: A) If the player graduates from school in less than four years and still has a season of eligibility remaining, he is either eligible for the graduate transfer exception or can apply for the graduate transfer waiver, which will grant him immediate eligibility; or B) If the player is transferring within 100 miles of an ill relative he can receive a waiver to play immediately.

(There are a couple of other situations that could gain a transfer immediate eligibility — Trey Zeigler was allowed to play at Pittsburgh immediately after transferring out of the school where his father was fired, and there is some scuttlebutt that the players that have left Rutgers this spring will be able to play immediately — but that is on a case-by-case basis.)

We’ve seen an uptick in transfers in recent years, particularly those of big name players. Just in the last two days, Evan Gordon left Arizona State (his second school) to transfer closer to home; Deandre Kane left Marshall and transferred to Pitt; and Mike Moser announced that he would be transferring to Oregon, which will be the third team that he plays for. All three of those guys will be eligible to play immediately. That says nothing of Trae Golden, who left Tennessee and may be eligible immediately, or Trey Zeigler, who transferred out of Pitt and to TCU after being declared immediately eligible to play at Pitt last season after transferring out of Central Michigan.

I can understand why the coaches will be frustrated by all of these transfers, especially when many of them spring up after teams illegally tamper with players already at a school. The rules are well-intentioned, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are being taken advantage of.

“The rule in most cases is not being used as intended and is clearly adding to the widespread free agency in college basketball,” Arizona State coach Herb Sendek told ESPN.com.

I don’t necessarily believe that it’s the right move to get rid of them, however. I honestly don’t think that there should be any restrictions on the players transferring out of one school and into another, unless these coaches also have no problem sitting out one season every time they transfer … err, change jobs. And you never know, maybe having some incentive to actually treat your players like human beings will help us avoid situations like this. And this.

But, hey, I’m not the one that makes the rules.

These coaches are.

And they don’t necessarily have their player’s best interest in mind.

Ask the NBA Draft deadline.

You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.

VIDEO: Shane Richards’ shot lifts shorthanded Manhattan

Shane Richards
Associated Press
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Thanks to injuries and the departure of Jermaine Lawrence, the beginning of the season has been difficult for Steve Masiello’s Manhattan Jaspers. Entering Wednesday’s game against George Mason, which was coming off of a surprising run to the Charleston Classic title game, with just six available players the Jaspers looked to pick up their first win of the season.

And Manhattan was successful, with a Shane Richards three-point play with 1.1 seconds remaining being the difference in their 69-67 win at Draddy Gymnasium. Below is video of the game-winning play, courtesy of Manhattan Athletics.

Richards (13 points) was one of three Jaspers to reach double figures, with Rich Williams leading the way with 26 points and nine rebounds and Thomas Capuano adding 14 points. What also helped the Jaspers was the fact that they forced 25 George Mason, converting those opportunities into 24 points.

Not sure if Manhattan and George Mason are due to play again next season, but the last two meetings have produced dramatic outcomes. The Patriots won last year’s game in Fairfax on a Jalen Jenkins’ 75-footer as time expired.

Video credit: Manhattan Athletics

UNLV hangs on for 72-69 win over No. 13 Indiana

Tom Crean
AP Photo
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LAHAINA, Hawaii (AP) UNLV answered every run by Indiana, and the Runnin’ Rebels were able to hang through the frantic final seconds for a 72-69 victory over the 13th-ranked Hoosiers on Wednesday.

The game had the intensity of a February conference matchup and just enough mistakes to make sure it was November.

“One of the reasons we came to Maui, other than it was exciting for our fans, was to play against the best,” UNLV coach Dave Rice said. “See how we match up. See where we’re good. See where our deficiencies are, and now we’ll have all next week to practice.”

Patrick McCaw had 20 points for the Runnin’ Rebels (5-1), who bounced back from their opening loss to UCLA with wins over Chaminade and the Hoosiers (4-2), who leave Hawaii with just one win in three games.

“This is a test,” Indiana coach Tom Crean said. “The eight teams walking out of here, no matter what, in three days are getting tested. All right? Even if the champion tonight blows through it, whoever the champion is, they’re still getting tested because you’re playing three games in three days against very high level competition.”

Indiana trailed by 15 points in the first half and turned on some solid defense to get back in the game. The Hoosiers closed to 55-53 with 8:20 to play. The Runnin’ Rebels then went on a 12-1 spurt, with McCaw scoring seven of the points, including a run-closing 3.

“Coming in, we knew since Indiana is a great offensive team, we really had to lock down and play defense,” Ike Nwamu said. “It was really paramount for us to execute defensively.”

The Hoosiers weren’t done. They got within three points twice in the final 30 seconds. The first time was on a dunk by Thomas Bryant off a tremendous pass from a flying Yogi Ferrell. UNLV’s Jerome Seagears made both ends of a 1-and-1 with 13 seconds left to make it 72-67.

Max Bielfeldt’s drive for Indiana with 7.5 seconds remaining provided the final margin, but the game was far from over.

Nwamu missed two free throws with 7.1 seconds left, and Indiana gave the ball back to UNLV on a 5-second count on the inbounds. UNLV then threw the ball away on an inbounds pass. Nick Zeisloft’s 3-point attempt was partially blocked by Ben Carter, and Nwamu was fouled on the rebound. He missed both free throws with .8 seconds left, but all Indiana could get off was a heave that was well short.

“I knew my man set the screen. I knew they were looking for a 3,” Carter said of the blocked shot. “I saw Pat was trailing his man a little bit, so I knew I had to help. Luckily I was able to get the tip on the ball and it was a pivotal play.”

Crean said he wouldn’t change the play.

“That was excellent. They made an athletic play. But he did a good job taking the shot,” Crean said.

Carter and Nwamu had 16 points apiece for UNLV, and Seagears added 12.

“These kind of games, it’s so much about momentum,” Rice said. “It’s about a big stop here, a big basket here. We always focus on what happens at the end of the game. And that’s obviously critically important. … It’s an entire game. That’s why we focus on it’s every play throughout the course of 40 minutes.”

Zeisloft led the Hoosiers, who lost to Wake Forest in the final seconds in their opener, with 17 points, and James Blackmon Jr. had 13. Indiana had 21 turnovers that led to 22 points for the Runnin’ Rebels.

“We got ourselves in a hole at the beginning with our turnovers, and you’re not going to beat any type of team, let alone one as talented as UNLV, when you’re giving them 22 points,” Crean said. “It’s unacceptable with the guys that have the ball in their hands for us to be giving the ball that way, and we’ve got to get that fixed. We really do, or we’ve got to fix the lineup.”