MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin will allow freshman forward Jarrod Uthoff to transfer to any school outside the Big Ten, hoping to defuse a situation that has drawn national criticism.
The school said Uthoff asked for permission to contact 16 schools and the Badgers rejected four of them. Uthoff appealed over three of those schools and met Thursday with Athletic Director Barry Alvarez and associate AD Justin Doherty.
The two officials then met with coach Bo Ryan and decided Uthoff can contact any school he wants to outside the Big Ten.
The school said in a release that "Ryan wanted the appeals process to serve as a means for dialogue to occur between Uthoff and UW Athletics administration."
If Uthoff wants to appeal the "permission to contact" denial to any Big Ten school, he may request a hearing to the Chair of the Athletic Board within eight business days, the school said.
Uthoff's former AAU coach in Iowa, Jamie Johnson, said on Wednesday said Uthoff will visit Creighton, one of the schools approved by Wisconsin even before the appeals process.
The 6-foot-8 Uthoff is a former Iowa Mr. Basketball. He redshirted as a freshman last season.
ESPN analyst Jay Bilas tweeted his disgust with the school trying to "control a player's destination."
NCAA rules allow a player to transfer, requiring them to sit out a year in most cases. But as Uthoff's situation shows, the process can be more complicated than simply finding a new school and filling out some forms. According to the NCAA's website, most transfers also require a "permission-to-contact" letter from the current school to the new school.
According to a student-athlete handbook posted on Wisconsin's website, a player who intends to transfer must make a written request to the school's director of compliance for permission to speak to another institution or use the transfer exception. A coach may deny permission, and the student-athlete can appeal.
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