Things have gotten a little convoluted surrounding the pending transfer of running back Gus Edwards.
Reports surfaced Tuesday from Scout.com’s Michael McCallister that Miami “has blocked certain schools as transfer destinations” for Edwards.
The school released a statement on Jan. 18 saying that Edwards would be leaving the program, including head coach Mark Richt iterating his “free release”.
“Gus indicated to me that he would like to explore the possibility of other opportunities to continue his football career and we have given him permission to do that,” Richt said in the release.
Now, according to McCallister’s report, the Hurricanes are putting stipulations on where Edwards can transfer. Specifically, Miami is said to be blocking “Gus The Bus” from taking his talents to any school that is on the Canes’ 2017 schedule.
If the reports are completely accurate, the stipulations aren’t farfetched. Coaches – and by extension, whole programs – are largely wary of allowing former players to move on rival schools or upcoming opponents.
Edwards will be a “graduate transfer” and would be eligible to play right away for whichever school he ultimately chooses. He is said to want to move to a school in the Northeast – closer to his hometown of Staten Island, New York.
Syracuse and Pittsburgh are two opponents on the Hurricanes’ 2017 schedule that reside in the northeastern part of the map.
What has made people raise their eyebrows is the fact that Richt has a detailed history of allowing players to transfer schools without restrictions.
It was something he routinely allowed during his time at Georgia and he even spoke to that effect right before the start of his first season leading Miami.
“I’ve unconditionally released every guy that ever wanted to leave,” Richt said after an August practice. “I think [life is] too short. I would call the commissioner and say, ‘If the kid wants to go, wherever he wants to go, let him go.”
According to The Palm Beach Post, Miami athletic director Blake James said that Edwards has yet to approach the school with a formal request to transfer. But maintains that when he does, the school would not grant him permission to move on to a school that falls into the “red category”.
“Institutionally, our policy has been that we would not do that for a school we’re going to play in the upcoming season,” James said.