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Coach K believes current transfer rules are 'a farce'

By Matt Norlander | College Basketball Writer

Mike Krzyzewski wants the same protocol for transfer, no matter the situation: a mandatory one-year redshirt. (USATSI)
Mike Krzyzewski wants the same protocol for transfer, no matter the situation. (USATSI)

Recently self-confessed Beyonce fan Mike Krzyzewski told ESPN.com he believes college basketball players who transfer to another school should always have to sit out a year.

"No exceptions," Krzyzewski said in an interview with Dana O'Neil. Currently, the NCAA is mired in a case-by-case system which allows players to bypass a redshirt year if circumstances are deemed "good" enough to allow a transfer to play immediately. Other times transfer waivers aren't approved and varying sizes of media- or fan base-fueled firestorms soon follow.

Additionally, if a player gets his undergraduate degree and opts to head to a different school to pursue a graduate degree, the grad-transfer rule -- which is relatively new to college basketball, having been introduced in the past half-decade -- allows that player to be eligible immediately.

Here's what Krzyzewski told ESPN.com.

"There should be no exceptions," Krzyzewski told ESPN.com. "Everybody should have to sit out, that includes a fifth-year player, just to make it equal. I think it's a farce, really."
...
"Giving certain kids the right to play and others not the right to play, it should be done the same," he said. "If they want to let everybody play right away, then let everybody play right away. Everybody should be treated the same. I don't understand why there are exceptions to this rule."

Coach K will benefit this year with the addition of former Mississippi State forward Rodney Hood. Hood transferred following the 2011-12 season and sat last year at Duke.

Krzyzewski's idea has clout and has been mentioned before by others and will be backed by some, certainly. But this is obviously a murky situation when referring to mandatory redshirt years for all. The most obvious example of how this wouldn't exactly fly -- and never has confronted Krzyzewski's former players at Duke -- is if a coach leaves a program for another job, or is fired.

Should a player be forced to stick it out at the school he chose, many times in large part because of a head coach? He can't leave to play somewhere else without putting his playing career on a one-year delay? That's clearly just another slab of legislation pinning players down. Then there are those who believe that no redshirt seasons would ostensibly mean an open season on "free agency," though I'm inclined to believe groupthink sways too much to the worst-case scenario there.

Regardless, adjustments can and should be made to how the NCAA governs its transfers. Otherwise every offseason will bring a cluster of controversies that make the organization look bad and often times the players look like even bigger victims, which has become the paramount argument against the institution in modern times.

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