"Although, I have had two great years at CU with my teammates, I have decided to transfer from the University of Colorado," Calhoun said in his statement. "Whether or not (Coach) Barnett is reinstated has no bearing on my situation or decision. I wish him the best and hope everything works out for him.
"My reason for leaving is far different than everybody expects and thinks. It has nothing to do with playing time or switching positions, but I have discussed my situation with my parents, and we have come up with a decision to transfer. We feel it is the right decision and we plan on moving on."
Calhoun did not disclose in the statement why he wanted to transfer, but a report in the Rocky Mountain News on Saturday quoted Calhoun's former high school coach as saying it had to do with the scrutiny that many of the Colorado football team's African American players had been under since the recent "scandal" broke out in February.
Last week, Colorado state attorney general Ken Salazar's office decided against prosecuting any of nine alleged sexual assault claims against members of the football team and former football recruits dating back to 2001. The special prosecutor cited a lack of evidence and the wishes of some of the alleged victims for the decision. Also last week, the Boulder authorities announced that the second of two football players at CU had been cleared as a suspect by DNA testing in a claim where the alleged victim said her perpetrators were "big and black," but didn't know if they were football players or not.
Though most of the alleged victims have refused to name their alleged perpetrators in the "scandal," it is believed that Calhoun was never one of them. And his departure may underscore what several players have said publicly about how they've felt a shadow of suspicion has been cast upon the entire team during the past three months, due to the unnamed, and to this point, unsubstantiated, allegations.
Calhoun continued in his statement, saying "Earlier reports were released in March about me wanting to transfer and they were completely false, and I had no affiliation with those articles. I am sorry for putting the coaches, fans and my teammates through that awkward situation. I wish the best for my teammates, and I enjoyed the last two years together, and hope they have great success in years to come."
He also contradicted earlier published reports that had him sending transcripts to Wisconsin earlier this year. "I have contacted Wisconsin recently, but I have not in previous months contacted them myself in any way nor have I sent transcripts to them. Recently, I have contacted several other schools in the Big East, Big Ten, and Southeast Conferences but I have not made that decision on where I am transferring to."
Interim head coach Brian Cabral said on Friday that Calhoun had met with him earlier that week and initially requested a release from his scholarship. But Cabral persuaded Calhoun to think over his decision and come and see him again that day if his decision stood. Cabral said Calhoun didn't come and see him again, but instead Calhoun returned home to Wisconsin.
"I know me wanting to transfer has been an on and off news story, and I am truly sorry to the coaches for having to put up with it and hearing so many different stories from everybody," Calhoun said. "I apologize to the fans and most importantly to my teammates. My teammates were put in an awkward situation and they were supportive, and still are supportive of my decision.Thanks for two great years and good luck in the future!!"
If Calhoun transfers to a Division I school, he will most likely have to sit out a year before playing football.