There has been a lot of hub bub lately about Alabama and head coach Nick Saban blocking the potential transfer of reserve defensive back Maurice Smith to Georgia.
Some people have said that if Alabama has no issue with wide receiver Chris Black transferring to another school in the SEC in Missouri, than the school should have no issue with Smith going to Georgia.
The Maurice Smith flap is another example of why we need a Commissioner for CFB. Facts are Saban has SEC rules on his decisions side. Period
— Tim Brando (@TimBrando) August 4, 2016
But as Lee Corso would say, “not so fast”, as Alabama says the circumstances of the two transfers are much different. More from ESPN.com:
“While it is understandable that questions are being asked about similarities regarding a situation involving another former football student-athlete transferring to an SEC institution, that instance occurred only because of unique circumstances,” Alabama said in a statement on Thursday.
“The student-athlete [Black] elected to have surgery in the middle of the season and left the program. Because of the timing of his departure, his scholarship was not renewed, and he requested to use the graduate transfer exception through the SEC. Our decision in this situation to support the SEC waiver was the exception and not the rule.
“We adhere to the SEC and institutional policies regarding issues of this manner. Waivers are not provided without compelling circumstances that present clear non-athletics reasons for the transfer. We remain happy to assist Maurice to enable a transfer to any non-SEC school, and have been doing everything requested regarding that throughout this process.”
Still, the outrage continues.
Many feel that since Smith already graduated and has a bond with Georgia coach Kirby Smart, who was of course the defensive coordinator for Alabama when Smith played for the Crimson Tide, Alabama should comply and not drag this through the mud any longer.
“He wants to go to Georgia. Period,” Samyra Smith (Smith’s mother) said according to ESPN via the AJC. “That’s where he wants to go.”
Smith, a 6’0”, 199-pound defensive back from Sugar Land, Texas was told by Saban, if he chose to remain with the team, he would play a key role with the club. Nonetheless, Smith wants out.
He is coming off a junior season in which he recorded 15 tackles, one sack and one pass deflection.