One more transfer story

This, because it encapsulates the mindset of major college athletics perfectly:

… [Oklahoma Athletic Director Joe] Castiglione said that not every transfer request could be resolved the same way because of “the uniqueness” of each case. Et cetera.

Afterward, Castiglione took questions from a small huddle of reporters who wanted him to tell the story of how he had lured Oklahoma’s basketball coach, Lon Kruger, from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, in 2011. Castiglione, who is an entertaining storyteller, told a long tale about how he had approached Kruger a number of times and finally persuaded him to agree to the move, even though Kruger and his wife had just moved into their dream house in Las Vegas. (It helped that Castiglione gave his new coach a seven-year, $16.6 million contract.)

When I asked Castiglione about the transfer rule, he told me that Oklahoma tried not to stand in the way of athletes who wanted to leave. But he also brought up the case of Baker Mayfield, the Sooners’ current quarterback, who walked on to the Texas Tech team as a freshman, then transferred to Oklahoma, where he walked on to its football team, too. Mayfield not only had to sit out a year but also lost a year of eligibility because of a Big 12 rule that punishes players who dare to move to a different college within the conference. The fact that Mayfield didn’t have an athletic scholarship made no difference.

Although Castiglione made it clear that he thought transferring should be easier for the players, he also worried, he said, about “people tampering with our current student-athletes to get them to transfer.”

The reason I say perfectly is because I doubt Castiglione even recognized the contradiction in the two situations as he spoke.


Filed under The NCAA

9 responses to “One more transfer story

  1. Hogbody Spradlin

    Hey these unrestricted transfer rules are great when they work to our benefit, BUT LET’S NOT GET CARRIED AWAY HERE!


  2. gastr1

    I didn’t hear it, but I’ll bet he did recognize the contradiction, and it’s exactly why he’s “afraid.”


  3. Dawg in Austin

    Let’s not forget why Baker was able to do that. He comes from a family who could float him a year in school without the scholarship money. Few other families of football players can do the same. Which is why the comments from coaches and ADs comparing players’ ability to “go anywhere they want” (like coaches and ADs can) is such BS.


    • Chi-town Dawg

      Excellent point DIA and not to mention that even though he hasn’t received a nickel in scholarship money (yet) from either school, it still cost him a year of eligibility just for moving to another Big 8 school. Can you imagine the uproar if someone decided to transfer from Valdosta State to UGA and was told they’d have to wait a year before they could get any HOPE scholarship money.


      • The more apt comparison is transferring within state because you prefer the program at another university (let’s say math, for examples sake) and being told that not only can you not accept HOPE scholarship money for a year, you also aren’t allowed to take any math classes. But yeah – keep on telling me they’re students just like anybody else.


        • DawgPhan

          Yep. They want them to be students sometimes and football players sometimes. Just depends on what helps the coach the most.


  4. DawgByte

    Blutarsky – You’ve missed your calling. You’d make a great hippie Greenpeace leader.