INDIANAPOLIS, IN – MARCH 17: Head coach Archie Miller of the Dayton Flyers reacts in the second half against the Wichita State Shockers during the first round of the 2017 NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on March 17, 2017 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images)

Earlier this week, we learned that the NCAA was considering a major rule change that would allow student-athlete transfers to play right away instead of sitting out a season. The only requirement would be that the student meets a minimum GPA in order to transfer immediately. If they didn’t meet the requirement, they could still transfer would have to sit out a full year.

While there are details and specifics to work out, it sounds like a step in the right direction for the often-archaic institution in charge of athletes such as college football and basketball players. Not to mention the arbitrary issues that tend to arise when players ask for a transfer. Having clear guidelines that open up the possibilities for them in the same way coaches can jump from school to school at-will if they choose to will make sense, even if it creates new questions about “free agency.”

One group that it was assumed might have a problem with a wide-open transfer rule happens to be those aforementioned coaches. Some of those coaches spoke with Scout about their concerns and, holy cow, the sky is apparently falling.

“It would turn into one of the dirtiest recruiting periods that you’ve ever seen,” said Archie Miller, who recently bailed on the Dayton Flyers players he recruited to become the new coach at Indiana. “You’ll have guys talking to your players when they are in your gym. Coaches will recruit players right after games and now you can go directly to the source, it would cripple teams and programs.”

“I think it’s ridiculous,” says Xavier’s Chris Mack, who will probably leave Musketeers players high and dry if and when a better opportunity presents itself. “There’s a constant narrative on social media about the mass exodus of kids and how it’s appalling so many kids opt to transfer,” he added. “So now we want to make it easier to transfer? I don’t see any logic in that line of thinking. Doesn’t surprise me, but it’s a step in the wrong direction in my opinion.”

“It would be the wild, wild west,” said a “high major assistant” who will drop his current players for new ones when he’s offered a head coaching gig.

“The power 5 will be doing most of their recruiting off the other teams,” said Middle Tennessee State coach Kermit Davis, who once left Idaho after just two seasons to take over Texas A&M.

The article’s writer, Evan Daniels, also has a pretty low opinion of the potential transfer rule, saying it would “certainly be in the conversation” of worst rules in the history of the sport. He notes that it would give student-athletes the worst thing they could possibly get: choice.

Could you imagine if Landry Shamet woke up in May and decided he wanted to play his final season at Kentucky? Or if Robert Williams decided he wanted to play in a different conference, so he transferred to Duke before heading off the to NBA Draft?

Or what if a high school prospect announced his college decision and said: “I’ll play my first year at School A, but I’m going to do my second year at School B, because I want a diverse experience.”

Those scenarios would become real possibilities if this passes.

Can you imagine that nightmare scenario where basketball players, who are basically required to attend these colleges due to age restrictions imposed on them arbitrarily, were given the opportunity to dictate their own paths and careers?

The horror…the horror…


About Sean Keeley

Along with writing for Awful Announcing and The Comeback, Sean is the Editorial Strategy Director for Comeback Media. Previously, he created the Syracuse blog Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician and wrote 'How To Grow An Orange: The Right Way to Brainwash Your Child Into Rooting for Syracuse.' He has also written non-Syracuse-related things for SB Nation, Curbed, and other outlets. He currently lives in Seattle where he is complaining about bagels. Send tips/comments/complaints to

1 thought on “Allowing transfers to play right away will ruin college basketball, say coaches who bailed on their players for better ones

  1. This article is laughable.
    “The horror” if players actually had choice!!
    Ask Xavier fans how fun it would be if every one of their best players, every year, transferred out to ACC to B1G schools who had overlooked them coming out of high school. Cool, right? Awesome for the game, huh??
    Awesome for the top 20 programs. Terrible for everyone else.

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