Tulane Transfer Considers Tide

Ricky Tarrant Jr., a sophomore 6-2, 190 pound Tulane point guard, has requested and received a transfer release from the Green Wave. The Pleasant Grove High School (AL) product was named the 2011-12 Conference USA Freshman of the Year and an All-Conference USA first team selection after leading the team in scoring (14.9 ppg), assists (102), steals (52), free throws made (131) and attempted (167).

Ricky Tarrant finished his sophomore season as the second leading scorer (15.7 ppg) while topping the team in assists (125) and steals (47) earning All-Conference USA second-team honors. He started all 66 games of his career. Tulane (20-15, 6-10) ended the season with a second round loss in the Collegeinsider.com Tournament.

NCAA rules state once a student-athlete provides written documentation indicating an intention to transfer, they may request "permission to contact" other coaches. The school has a seven-day window to address the petition or the issue is approved by default.

He received consent from Tulane on Tuesday after initially being denied. "He wasn't happy and wanted to play closer to home," said Tarrant's father, Ricky, Sr. as the main two reasons for the transfer. Eligible to compete after sitting out the 2013-14 campaign, the only stipulation attached to the release is he cannot select a school in Tulane's new conference, the revamped Big East, which will be the American Athletic Conference.

Tarrant is a highly productive known commodity. A host of schools are in pursuit but no timetable has been set for a decision. "I am going to pick the school that I feel is best for me no matter what anyone else says," replied the one of 16 Kyle Macy 2012 Freshman All-America team designees.

Alabama, Auburn, Butler, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Kansas State, Marquette, Oregon, Purdue, Tennessee and Texas are among the programs showing interest. He has yet to declare a major but accounting is an option.

A bond remains with current Alabama players Rodney Cooper, Trevor Lacey and Levi Randolph along with incoming freshman Jimmie Taylor who were his teammates on the Alabama Challenge AAU team coached by Robert Shannon.

Comfort level with the coaching staff is a factor affecting the choice. The family is familiar with Anthony Grant. Tarrant was recruited by the Tide beginning the summer of his sophomore year but not offered a scholarship.

"I think he is a great guy and a real professional," said Tarrant Sr. of the Alabama head coach. "Of course Alabama is going to be one of the favorites since they are just 45 minutes down the street." Five official visits can be taken by a student-athlete pursuing a transfer.

Tarrant and his dad attended the recent NIT game in Tuscaloosa against Maryland. "They played hard the whole 40 minutes and had an up tempo style. You could tell those guys are really committed to the way Alabama plays," Tarrant Jr said. "He (Grant) is a great coach. His teams play hard on the defensive end and take great shots on the offensive end."

He embraces a true point guard mentality. "Seeing your teammates play well while you're playing well is a great feeling," he said. The school with the best chance to secure his signature according to Tarrant will have "a great fan base, a coach who believes in me and a team who can make it to the NCAA tournament, make a run and compete at the highest level in conference play and the conference tournament."

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