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WSU hoops: Izundu transfer takes bizarre turn, Ernie Kent removes restrictions

AFTER GOING to the trouble of blocking Valentine Izundu’s transfer to San Diego State, Washington State’s Ernie Kent has reversed course and will allow the center to visit SDSU.

Izundu will also visit Fresno State and UNLV, the San Diego Union Tribune reports.

The impetus for the reversal appears to be Monday's report in the San Diego Union Tribune, which said a collegiate athletes’ rights group, the Student-Athletes Human Rights Project, had sent letters to new WSU president Kirk Schulz and National Association of Basketball Coaches Executive Director Jim Haney. Kent serves on the NABC board.

“Your unwillingness to provide Mr. Izundu with due process sends a message to many prospective students and athletes that could have detrimental consequences for your institution,” the SAHRP said in its letter to Schulz, the newspaper reported.

An email from SAHRP Director Emmett Gill to Haney was also apparently released to the Tribune. 

“Jim, I honestly believe restricting the transfer options of college athletes is a form of abuse — abuse of power,” Gill wrote to Haney. “I realize Coach Kent has been advocating to further limit the transfer rights of college athletes. I truly believe this is unfortunate given Coach Kent is a man of color.”

Two weeks ago, Kent and Izundu each spoke in front of a three-person WSU faculty panel which sided with Kent, saying it “felt that tampering has taken place (improper communication through a third party) and that was the key factor in the decision.”

For the Union-Tribune articles, click HERE and HERE.

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