One of the biggest transfers of the college basketball offseason was former West Virginia sophomore guard Eron Harris opting to leave the Big 12 program in favor of Michigan State.
Harris committed to the Spartans earlier this week and in an interview with Allan Taylor of the West Virginia MetroNews, the high-scoring guard opened up about his decision to leave the Mountaineers.
“At West Virginia, I just didn’t feel like my life was whole,” Harris said to Taylor. “The basketball part was going pretty well, but I felt stressed in some other areas.”
Much has been made of West Virginia head coach Bob Huggins losing a handful of transfers the last few years, but Harris declined to say anything negative about Huggins or the West Virginia fans that had bad things to say about him on the way out.
Harris’ father, Eric, however, had some things to say about Huggins to The Detroit News earlier this week.
“The coaching style at West Virginia wasn’t a match for Eron,” Eric Harris said to The Detroit News. “We respect Coach (Bob Huggins) and the fans who are real loyal to the school. We just felt like we needed the change for the betterment of Eron’s basketball future.”
The Detroit News story also relays that Eric Harris went to Purdue with the father of former Michigan State guard Gary Harris (no relation) and Gary’s father spoke glowingly of Izzo and Michigan State to Eric Harris. That aided the Spartans in landing their new two-guard, as Eron Harris will help replace Gary Harris after Eron sits out the 2014-15 season due to NCAA transfer regulations. Eron Harris will have two seasons of eligibility remaining in East Lansing.
Although he’s leaving West Virginia behind, Harris took a high road in reflecting on his two years there.
“I came through there and learned some things. There were some good things that happened to me and some bad things that happened,” Harris said to Taylor. “And I appreciate all the fans that showed me love, I really do.”
The 6-foot-3 guard averaged 17.2 points, 3.5 rebounds and 1.6 assists per game in his sophomore season at West Virginia and also had impressive shooting splits as he shot 43 percent from the field, 42 percent from three-point range and 85 percent from the free-throw line.
It’s hard to say whether the basketball aspect of things is the primary reason that Harris left West Virginia — since Eron and his father seem to give different answers — but given the recent number of departures under Huggins, it’s hard not to wonder.