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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Freshman basketball player to transfer

    UA freshman guard Laval Lucas-Perry quit the Arizona men’s basketball team Monday, announcing he has decided to transfer to another school. He’s undecided on where that will be.

    Lucas-Perry said he’s grateful to have been part of “”such a prestigious program”” and thanked the UA community and coaches, who he said he has much respect for, in a statement released through GOAZCATS.com.

    “”My transfer from the UA program is not a reflection of any one thing, but is purely personal,”” he said. “”I would like to wish the coaches, players and fans much success in the years to come, and UA will always be considered my second HOME!””

    NCAA rules stipulate that Lucas-Perry must sit out a year before transferring to another Division I school, so he will not be eligible to play until the end of the fall semester next year when he will have 2 1/2 years of eligibility left. If he had waited until the end of the season, he could have used his redshirt season during the transfer year and had three years of eligibility left.

    “”We wish Laval the best of luck,”” UA interim head coach Kevin O’Neill said in a press release. “”He is a great kid. Unfortunately, he felt that opportunities would be better for him elsewhere.””

    His father, Laval Perry, did not return a call for comment.

    Lucas-Perry, who hails from Grand Blanc, Mich., averaged 4.0 points and 1.6 rebounds in 9.8 minutes per game, seeing time in five of the Wildcats’ eight contests. His best game came Nov. 19 against Missouri-Kansas City when he set career highs in points (nine), rebounds (five) and minutes (24).

    The news comes four days after UA head coach Lute Olson announced that he will miss the rest of the season for personal reasons.

    Lucas-Perry, the No. 138 player in the recruiting Web site Rivals.com’s class of 2007 rankings, was offered scholarships by Boston College, Iowa, Michigan, Penn State and Wisconsin, according to Rivals, making it possible one of those schools could be interested in him now.

    He becomes the 12th Wildcat to transfer since 1998. An Arizona guard has left each of the past three Decembers, with J.P. Prince transferring to Tennessee last year and Jesus Verdejo heading to South Florida in 2005.

    The Wildcats cannot re-assign the scholarship for second semester because NCAA rules specify they must be awarded for the entire year.

    Therefore, Arizona cannot replace Lucas-Perry with another scholarship player until next season or reward a scholarship to walk-on forward Bret Brielmaier, who has started the past three games.

    For more on the transfer, check out the Wildcat‘s blog.

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