COLUMBIA — It didn’t take long Monday to see that the Southeastern Conference’s basketball coaches certainly have strong feelings about the unprecedented rise of transfers in college hoops.
By TEREZ A. PAYLOR
The Kansas City Star
“It’s an alarming trend,” said Alabama coach Anthony Grant.
“It’s something that’s got to be dealt with,” Arkansas coach Mike Anderson added later.
And on and on it went, as coach after coach repeated a certain distaste for the recent trend during a conference call. Close to 11 percent of Division I basketball players transferred in the past two offseasons, with more than 400 players changing schools each season, and according to NCAA records, more than 40 percent of college basketball players will switch programs before the end of their sophomore seasons.
South Carolina coach Frank Martin believes he knows why this has happened.
“Here’s my opinion on it — I don’t know if it’s real popular,” Martin said. “But we have 350 Division I schools, so there’s going to be more transfers than we had 10 years ago, based on the fact we have more teams.”
Martin, however, also believes some of the responsibility for this trend lies with the kids, their parents and coaches and says it starts long before they get to college.
“This is a grassroots problem,” Martin said. “When we recruit these kids, they’ve transferred three or four times in high school. It’s not like they’re gonna have an epiphany all of a sudden.
“You try to engage in conversations with players day in and day out and have an idea of what’s happening with them, because if you don’t speak to them, someone else is. “It’s unfortunate, but it’s a culture we’ve created.”