May 24, 2013, 10:20 AM EDT
In the aftermath of Sheldon Jeter’s decision to transfer from Vanderbilt it was reported that Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings was blocking Pittsburgh as a possible destination.
Some assumed that tampering was the reason for the move, but according to a report by Andy Katz of ESPN.com that may not be the case.
Regardless of whether or not it’s fair to put a block on a player receiving a scholarship in his first year at a new school (blocking doesn’t prevent the player from transferring to a school, but does cloud the process with the NCAA), there is a right and wrong way to depart. Jeter tweeted “Due to some personal issues, I am leaving Vanderbilt University to be closer to my family.’’ According to a source with direct knowledge, he didn’t meet face-to-face with Stallings to tell him he was leaving.
In many instances where coaches place restrictions on where a player can transfer it’s the program that will take the hit in the court of public opinion. But if the lack of a face-to-face meeting is the reason for Stallings’ decision, can he really be blamed for it?
As it has been noted Jeter can still attend Pittsburgh next year without Stallings’ approval, but it would prohibit Jeter from receiving a scholarship for the 2013-14 academic year.
In situations such as this one, the student-athlete can file an appeal with the school to gain their release. Hopefully the two parties sit down and have the conversation that possibly did not happen when Jeter made his decision to transfer.
Raphielle can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.
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