Well, this is a little awkward now. I actually wrote Part One of this series Sunday night, at which time I had still managed to convince myself that none of the rumors could be true and surely Frank wouldn't actually leave us for an inferior job in one of the most socially conservative states in America.
Now here we are. I don't really want to say anything about the Frank situation right now except that I think both Frank and John Currie deserve some blame and I still expect to learn a lot more about it in the coming weeks.
I feel the need to stress again that this post is not meant in any way to be an indictment of Frank's coaching style that may or may not have led to the following transfers. And no, there will not be a Part Three for guys who leave this offseason.
For the final six transfers of the Frank Martin era, click the jump.
Of all of Frank's transfers, Dom may have been one of the most understandable, as I can't really fault a guy for wanting to be closer to his family. At the same time, since he left after playing for three years and helping guide the ‘Cats to the Elite 8 in 2010, it was incredibly painful to see him go.
Just as a brief reminder, Dom was a defensive stud who even began to show flashes of putting his crazy athleticism to good use during his junior season, when he averaged 7.2 points and 5.8 rebounds per game and posted three double-doubles. If his shot was falling, which was admittedly rare, he could be tough to stop.
Anyway, I'm thrilled to report that after sitting out a year at North Carolina Central, Sutton was (of course) the best player on a team that went 17-15 (10-6 in the MEAC) in its first official season of Division I basketball. He earned First Team All-MEAC honors and averaged team bests of 16.4 points, 7.4 rebounds, and 2.2 steals per game while shooting a team-best 58% from the field, probably because he was smart enough to attempt only two 3-pointers all season.
In the MEAC quarterfinals, Sutton posted a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds and even appeared to give his team a three-point lead with 21 seconds left with a "highlight reel dunk" (sound familiar?). But it was nullified by what I can only assume was a bullshit charging call made by officials paid by someone from kU (Roy Williams lives nearby) and Bethune-Cookman hit a game-winner with 5.7 seconds left to end Dom's collegiate career.
Dom majored in Social Science, but I have no doubt he's got the physical skills necessary to go pro if he wants to, as he showed just last summer when he earned co-MVP honors with Rasheed Wallace (yeah, that Rasheed Wallace) in a summer league that also featured other NBA players and North Carolina's Harrison Barnes. If we're really lucky and we can convince Pan it's OK, Dom might even come back to KSU eventually as an assistant on Coach Jacob Pullen's staff.
Shockingly, Freddy is still claiming to be under 40 years of age and does have one year of college eligibility remaining. He was of course the junior that left Kansas State in mid-January last season after he had made the Wildcats his fourth stop in three years* following Florida International, Miami Dade College and Cloud County Community College (where he didn't actually play basketball).
*Are you noticing a pattern here? There are lessons to be learned here, notably that coaches should BE VERY CAREFUL when bringing in guys who have been to more than one college before you start recruiting them.
As you'll recall, the story from paragon of morality and trust, Art Alvarez, was that his former AAU player wanted to explore professional opportunities, most likely overseas, because he needed to help his ailing mother. Can't fault a guy for that, right?
Well, Freddy ended up crossing the Mighty Mississippi Sea and apparently getting a sweet deal from Canisius College in Buffalo, New York, so he could sit out a season and play one more year of college basketball. For a team that finished 5-25 and dead last this season in the Mid-American Athletic Conference.
I guess next year he'll keep going for that major in ....undecided (according to his KSU bio, which you'll recall was written during his third year in higher education) and try to help a hopeless team that is returning virtually all of its miserable players, which include no forward who averaged better than 7 points per game. Good luck, Freddy.
There's not really a whole lot to say about Wally Judge that hasn't already been said, particularly concerning his time at Kansas State, which ended rather unceremoniously near the end of January last year. There are some things that were widely reported about the sophomore who never really clicked at KSU, and some other things that are widely known and really don't need to be said here.
In any case, I do hope that Wally can make a Curtis Kelly-like transformation at Rutgers, where he'll be a junior next winter after sitting out this season. The Scarlet Knights went 14-18 this year with three somewhat impressive home wins against Florida, UConn and Cincinnati.
It might actually be good news for Wally and his seemingly allergic-to-big-moments personality that the average attendance for those three games was about 7,500. It may not be such good news that every significant contributor comes back for Rutgers, which means he'll have to fight for minutes on a team that was admittedly undersized and desperately in need of scorers in the post.
I can clearly remember watching Nick Russell as a freshman and being really excited about what he could do on a basketball court, then seeing him make some real progress as a sophomore. He had a decent shot and could be dangerous off the dribble, but I'm betting it was his lack of the appropriate defensive intensity that kept him from getting the time he probably deserved.
It's no secret that today's AAU culture has made kids a lot more impatient when it comes to playing time, so it came as no surprise when Nick left following his sophomore season. Russell transferred to SMU, a place near his hometown of Duncanville that recruited him heavily out of high school.
However, the Mustangs recently fired their head coach, Matt Doherty, a man who once won a national championship at UNC. That shouldn't negatively affect Nick's chances for playing time, as it's hard to imagine him not getting a chance for a team that went 4-12 in Conference USA this season and is losing the only player who averaged better than 10 points per game.
If Nick Russell was a "reserve guard," as most people referred to him, then Myles was probably more of a throwaway guard. In his one season at Kansas State following a fairly successful season at Tallahassee Community College, Myles played in just 19 games, averaging 2.1 points and 4.7 minutes per game.
Predictably, the 6-1 Canadian guard took a pretty big step down when he transferred to the University of South Dakota, where he'll have two years of eligibility remaining after sitting out this season. South Dakota, who finished near the bottom of the Summit League, is losing its top two scorers, both of whom are guards, so Myles should certainly have an opening if he's good enough to take advantage of it.
He's another "undecided" major and would have gone to Louisiana Tech out of high school if not for eligibility issues, so let's hope this whole basketball thing works out.
Surely Devon Peterson knew when he was allowed to walk on at Kansas State in 2010 after a solid juco season at Broward Community College in Florida that he wasn't going to see the floor a whole lot at KSU, especially with last year's team. Still, the obvious reason for his transfer was the lack of playing time, as he appeared briefly in just 16 games for the ‘Cats.
I say obvious because he wound up at Mountain State, which is actually located in West Virginia, rather than the forgotten 51st state of Mountain. While Jonfmorse will be speaking the truth when he tells you they are an NAIA powerhouse - they beat D-1 Morehead State 84-69 in an exhibition before this season - it's clearly not in the same stratosphere as Kansas State basketball and a kid from Brooklyn isn't going there because he's impressed by the tradition or the campus.
One benefit to playing at Mountain State - outside of (presumably) learning how to survive in the wilderness - is that Peterson didn't have to sit out a year. He had a pretty solid season in 2011-12, averaging 13.2 points and 23.2 minutes per game for a team that went 26-9 and got crushed by Oklahoma Baptist 77-56 in the semifinals of the Buffalo Funds-NAIA Division I Men's Basketball National Championship (really) despite Peterson's team-high 11 points.
It's worth pointing out that Devon is, once again, a guy that had committed to another school (Hofstra) before learning that he did not qualify and had to go the juco route. He's also another Social Science major. Lessons abound.