Our Wisconsin friends would like to remind us there are two sides to every story -- even this one, presumably.
We've just yet to find it.
This story seems pretty clear -- and it seems pretty clearly defined that Badgers basketball coach Bo Ryan isn't making any friends as a result. The crux? Whereas transfers INTO the Badgers football program are plentiful (cheap shot alert), transfers out of the basketball program are quite rare. Ryan should get kudos for this, clearly -- whereas Minnesota has had a bevy of players leave in the past few seasons under Tubby Smith, Ryan had not seen a player transfer out since 2006. Until last week.
That's when Jarrod Uthoff asked for a release from his scholarship. Uthoff is one of those classic Wisconsin small/power forwards who can shoot from the outside and score form the inside -- usually with three seconds or fewer left on the shot clock (another Badgers cheap shot alert. Sorry). But the former Mr. Basketball in Iowa decided his talents were better suited elsewhere.
Uthoff was granted a release by Ryan -- in a way. The release said that Uthoff could not transfer to Iowa State, Marquette or any school in the Big Ten. So the former top player in Iowa can't play for Iowa or Iowa State. It has since been reported by Metro Sports Report that the entire ACC has been added to the list. That means we're up to 25 schools. Per that report:
Uthoff said the University of Virginia (an ACC school coached by former Wisconsin assistant Tony Bennett) sought permission from Wisconsin to contact him. As a result, Ryan added Virginia and all the other ACC schools to the no-contact list.
Uthoff said he doesn't know why Ryan has placed so many schools on the restricted list. "You have a better guess than I do," he said. "I'm not really sure."
That site and ESPN.com have tried reaching out to Wisconsin via their media relations department, but as of Tuesday afternoon they have not commented. Yahoo reported the same thing and spoke to Uthoff's AAU coach.
Uthoff has reportedly appealed the restrictions, telling the Omaha paper he expects to have a resolution soon.
For now, it simply looks like Ryan is upset that he's losing a potential contributor and he's not exactly handling it well. It's OK for Russell Wilson to transfer in and lead the football team to the Rose Bowl (and for Danny O'Brien to follow suit). Just don't try leaving the basketball team.