Apparently, Coach Cal pouring his heart out wasn't enough to keep Scottie Haralson at UConn.
After hinting at his possible departure the past few weeks, the soon-to-be sophomore guard has officially decided to transfer to Tulsa, according to pretty much all 20 Connecticut news outlets. The story was first reported by the Tulsa World (whose name seems to be a bit contradictory, now, doesn't it?).
"Scottie fills a huge need. He’s a big, strong and powerful kid who can really shoot the basketball," Tulsa coach Doug Wojcik told the World. "He was a very exceptional high school player with national recognition."
Haralson, a three-star prospect coming out of Provine High (Jackson, Miss.), was thought to be one of the final pieces of what was expected to be another four-year plan for the Huskies. With UConn deep and talented at every position, Haralson was supposed to provide the team with the legitimate deep threat in seemingly lacked.
However, despite rave revues of his range in preseason practices, Haralson's tenure was filled with disappointment. After his season got off to a rough start after he miss his first five attempts (all 3s), he never really recovered, and was banished to the B team for most of the season. He finished the year averaging 1.4 points in 4.1 minutes per game, and shooting 31.5 pct. (6-for-19) from 3. He also took only one two shots inside the arc, making one of them.
To sum up his short stint in Storrs: He was brought in to shoot 3s, and he couldn't even do that.
Now, he leaves the program to join the land of the misfit, "damn, can we get a mulligan on him?" players. Including Haralson, six players have transferred from the program the past three seasons. The list includes: Haralson, Curtis Kelly (Kansas State), Ben Eaves (Rhode Island), Rob Garrison (Niagra), Doug Wiggins (UMass, somewhere in Hartford) and Marcus Johnson (USC) -- who recently was given another year of eligibility, but then, oddly, decided to turn pro a week ago.
But like Garrison and Eaves before him, Haralson's transfer was basically expected from the time he sign his letter of intent.
Although given three stars by Rivals.com, Haralson's only other offers came from middel-tier D-I schools Minnesota and Auburn. And it showed when Haralson finally made his way onto the Gampel/Morgue court. Aside from his shooting woes, Haralson's movements were very rigid, making him looking like a robot as he moved around the court (a point I made in his first preseason game). He also looked lost a lot while the team ran its offense, and for a 3-point shooter who only really needs to sit near the arc, he had a tough time spacing.
As GXPanos mentioned in the comments field of my last post, Haralson's recruitment was likely another example of Coach Cal hubris. Still, such risks have worked out before, with Craig Austrie being the latest example (I know; but he was a starter, so you have to give him that much). But now UConn is no longer burdened with scholarship, and Haralson gets to revitalize his career in a place where he's likely to have more success. So no harm done, really.
And, as an added bonus, Haralson should fit right in at Tulsa, as their Red, blue and obnoxious gold color scheme seems best suited for a WWF leotard.