Charles Matthews to transfer out of Kentucky

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Kentucky announced on Wednesday morning that Charles Matthews will be transferring out of the program.

“I want to thank the coaches, my teammates and the Big Blue Nation for all of their support this season,” Matthews said. “I gained great experience during my freshman year at Kentucky. This was a difficult decision for me, but at the end of the day I felt like it was in my best interest to explore other options. I appreciate the support Coach Cal has given me in making this decision and the commitment the coaching staff made to me for this past season and beyond. Kentucky will always hold a special place in my heart.”

Matthews was a top 100 recruit in the Class of 2015, but the 6-foot-5 wing averaged just 1.7 points in 10 minutes this past season. And with the like of De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk joining the program next season — and Isaiah Briscoe potentially returning to school — the back court was looking more and more crowded.

“The hardest thing as a coach is to lose a player that you really want to coach,” Calipari said. “In Charles’ case, I believe he is going to be a productive college player who has the ability to play at the next level. I know Charles’ best basketball is ahead of him, and while I’m a saddened to see him go, I support his decision and will help in any way I can.

“It hasn’t happened very often in my career, but transferring is a part of our game. It doesn’t change who we are as a program. We will support every kid in whatever way we can to make sure they can pursue their dreams, because ultimately that’s all I want for these young men.”

Matthews is the fifth Calipari player to transfer out of the program: Darnell Dodson (Southern Miss), Stacey Poole (Georgia Tech), Kyle Wiltjer (Gonzaga) and Ryan Harrow (Georgia State).