Whenever there’s a coaching change, there tends to be some player turnover at that particular program. That’s the case at Tennessee, where freshman forward Tariq Owens has decided to request a releas from his scholarship according to Ben Frederickson of the Knoxville News-Sentinel. Owens’ decision comes just a couple days after the school introduced Rick Barnes as its new head coach.
In Frederickson’s story, Owens’ father discussed his son’s decision and made note of the uncertainty that surrounded Owens’ future in the program and how Barnes would fill out the remainder of his coaching staff.
“My concern is him getting recruited over and not being a part of the plan going forward,” Renard Owens said. “And the reason that I have that feeling is because Coach Barnes, with all due respect, didn’t recruit Tariq. The coaches who did recruit Tariq who are there, we don’t even know if they are going to be retained. There may not be anybody on the staff that has a relationship with Tariq or any of the boys.”
The 6-foot-9 Owens played in 28 games this season, making five starts and averaging 1.2 points, 1.1 rebounds and 7.6 minutes per contest under Donnie Tyndall. According to Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com, Owens is expected to visit St. John’s in the near future.
New head coach Chris Mullin certainly has some holes to fill on his roster, with the nucleus of this year’s NCAA tournament team out of eligibility and suspended center Chris Obekpa’s status yet to be determined.
After weeks of holding on out on releasing him from his national letter of intent, Ohio has finally granted senior forward Tariq Owens a release from the school, according to a report from Alex Kline of the Recruit Scoop.
Rivals lists the 6-foot-8 Owens as a three-star prospect and the native of Maryland could have been a major addition for an Ohio team coming off of a 25-win season but Owens wanted to open up his options after former head coach Jim Christian left for Boston College and Ohio got North Dakota State head coach Saul Phillips.
It was reported early in April by Scout.com‘s Evan Daniels that Owens was being refused his release by Ohio athletic director Jim Schaus. Owens was even prepared to sit out for a season if Ohio refused to release him. But it appears the Bobcats have done the right thing and let Owens go on his way.
Will Owens now give a look to former head coach Jim Christian at Boston College now that the former Ohio coach is in the ACC?
Tariq Owens, a 6-foot-8 forward from St. Vincent Pallotti High (Md.) committed to Ohio University 10 months ago. On Thursday, head coach Jim Christian left the program after two years to take the Boston College opening.
On Saturday night, North Dakota State head coach Saul Phillips was announced as Christians replacement.
Following Christian’s departure, Owens, a three-star recruit according to Rivals, requested his release from his National Letter of Intent. According to a report from Evan Daniels of Scout, Ohio Director of Athletics Jim Schaus has denied that request.
“Same source says, Tariq Owens has no intentions of going to Ohio and would sit out a year if he has to,” Daniels tweeted.
Before he committed to the Bobcats, Owens held offers from Florida Gulf Coast, Miami (FL), Seton Hall, South Florida and VCU.
The Bobcats are coming off a 25-win season, and entering the 2014-2015 season Owens was going to join Maurice Ndour, the team’s second-leading scorer and top rebounder, on the Bobcats frontline.
Two years ago, Ohio head coach John Groce accepted the same position at Illinois. Ohio released a three-star recruit in the Class of 2012 from his letter of intent. That turned out to be Michigan shooting guard Caris LeVert, who averaged 12.9 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.9 assists per game this season for the Big Ten regular season champion.
Ohio finished third in the MAC East Division.