By Nick Veronica
UB guard Shannon Evans is leaving the school, according to a report from Big 4 Talk’s Johnathan Snyder.
Further, Snyder reports that UB is blocking Evans from transferring to a number of schools, including Arizona State, where former UB coach Bobby Hurley just took over.
[UPDATE: UB reverses course, allows Evans to transfer anywhere]
Evans scored 15.4 points per game as a sophomore and dished out 4.6 assists per game. He was one of the most important players on the team’s MAC championship run.
Losing a stud like Evans reflects poorly on UB athletic director Danny White, who recently promoted assistant coach Nate Oats to head coach without conducting any other interviews. A main benefit of giving Oats the job was the perception that it would help keep the talented players on the team.
Evans also tweeted (and later deleted) that he couldn’t even get an audience with White to discuss his future:
For what it’s worth, teams usually block players from transferring to conference opponents or local rivals. Anything beyond that is seen as excessive.
If you’re tallying White’s recent blunders, mismanaging the Hurley situation was one, not conducting a national search for a new coach is two, and not accommodating one of the most important athletes on his campus would be three.
Evans’ comments to Mark Gaughan of the Buffalo News are particularly damning:
“I wanted to talk to Danny White today,” Evans said. “I saw him. He said, ‘I’ve got to do this, I’ve got to do this. Talk to Nate Oats, I told him everything.’ . . . It’s like he was in a rush.”
Evans said Oats informed him that UB would allow him to transfer but would block a move by Evans to go to Arizona State, Virginia Commonwealth, Old Dominion or another MAC school. Evans is a native of Suffolk, Va.
“They’re basically going to block all the schools I want to talk to,” Evans said. “I just feel like they don’t want my best interests and what’s best for me personally, and I really don’t like that. I feel like if I want my release, OK, any MAC school, I understand. But they shouldn’t block me from any school in a higher conference than Buffalo.”