Maurice Smith just wants to play ball.

I’ve posted about this before, but Maurice Smith is an Alabama defensive back who’s left the program and intends to enroll elsewhere as a graduate transfer.  As you might imagine, given that his former defensive coordinator and position coach now reside in Athens, Georgia is a mite bit interested in offering Smith a new place to land.  (As are several other programs.)  Since he’s a graduate transfer, no problem, amirite?


There’s a complicated situation playing out behind the scenes at Alabama involving a player who is trying to get his release and move on to another school as a graduate transfer.

Senior defensive back Maurice Smith wants to transfer, but has been unsuccessful getting a release despite several attempts during the last month, sources told

Smith, who was the Tide’s first-team nickel back during the spring, is now going through an appeal process, according to sources.

It doesn’t sound particularly complicated to me.  It sounds like coaches being coaches.  On the other hand, I’m not entirely sure what to make of this.

The SEC rule, if you need a reminder, is this:

Now the SEC will allow schools to accept grad student transfers without a waiver if the transfers meet certain standards. Among the criteria for the transfer: always stayed eligible as an undergrad; no significant disciplinary issues at the old school; and earned all possible APR points. If a player doesn’t meet those standards, a school can still go through the current process of seeking a waiver from the SEC office.

Once the transfer comes to an SEC school, the rule requires the player to make progress toward a graduate degree. If that doesn’t happen, the university won’t be able to apply the grad-student exception in that athlete’s sport for three years.

That “progress toward a graduate degree” standard is a bit murky.  And the penalty is pretty much a screw job.  I can see how that might make Kirby a little nervous about taking Smith, if Georgia were where he wanted to go.


Filed under Academics? Academics., Georgia Football, Nick Saban Rules, SEC Football

8 responses to “Maurice Smith just wants to play ball.

  1. Debby Balcer

    I hope he can transfer. The rule stinks.


  2. ASEF

    Isn’t it kind of hypothetical? My understanding js that he actually hasn’t graduated yet.

    And can he go to Miami without the waiver?


  3. W Cobb Dawg

    Wait a minute. We traded Pruitt and cash to bama, and in exchange we were supposed to get Kirby, Tucker, Schuman, and a player to be named later. Don’t tell me McG didn’t bother reading the fine print in the contract again!


  4. Dawg in Austin

    With that vagueness of language, how hard could that be to accomplish and for the school to prove?


  5. HVL Dawg

    Let’s speculate…

    Maybe our recent graduate transfer from Virginia hasn’t made progress toward a graduate degree and UGA is blocked?


  6. DawgPhan

    wait i thought that saban was giving this kid a full release. Why is he appealing?


    • Dolly Llama

      That was my understanding. Weren’t we all just talking about this kid the other day? Somebody even suggested that Saban was releasing him as a spy, a Trojan Horse inside Georgia’s walls.