There hasn’t been any public mention of the status of Sheldon Jeter transfer situation over the holiday weekend. Whether Jeter is appealing directly to Vandy over transfer restrictions or some other quiet discussion is occurring is unknown.
What is known is that after the initial outcry over the restriction on Jeter, there has been the careful pushback from Vandy/Stallings. No actual statement or anything to quote. Just pushing their story as a “source.”
The claim being that Jeter wasn’t a man about his departure.
Regardless of whether or not it’s fair to put a block on a player receiving a scholarship in his first year at a new school (blocking doesn’t prevent the player from transferring to a school, but does cloud the process with the NCAA), there is a right and wrong way to depart. Jeter tweeted “Due to some personal issues, I am leaving Vanderbilt University to be closer to my family.’’ According to a source with direct knowledge, he didn’t meet face-to-face with Stallings to tell him he was leaving. Jeter, a freshman forward from Beaver Falls, Pa., isn’t the first nor the last to mishandle a departure. There is a mature way to deal with leaving. Evan Gordon left Arizona State two weeks ago. He went in and told Herb Sendek he was out. The conversation didn’t last more than a few minutes. But at least there was one. Jeter averaged 5.5 points, 3.4 rebounds and 17.5 minutes a game. He’ll probably end up at Pitt. He may be on scholarship by next season. Cooler heads may prevail here. But most of the time the reason there is animosity over an exit is the way in which it is handled.
There are a couple problems here.
Let’s start with how the timeline was presented by Andy Katz on this.
Jeter tweeted “Due to some personal issues, I am leaving Vanderbilt University to be closer to my family.’’ According to a source with direct knowledge, he didn’t meet face-to-face with Stallings to tell him he was leaving.
Now if you read this, it would suggest that Jeter abruptly tweeted out his departure with Stallings and Vandy finding out the same time as everyone else. There’s nothing in the piece as a whole to suggest otherwise.
Except that is not entirely true. Jeter didn’t tweet that out until that night (around 8 pm). Prior that, Vandy had already issued a press release.
Vanderbilt head coach Kevin Stallings has announced that forward Sheldon Jeter is leaving the program.
“Sheldon has indicated that he’d like to play closer to home, and we wish him the best,” said Stallings.
That was released sometime in the afternoon — before the tweet.
So, Stallings and Vandy did know at least a while in advance. Was it hours or days? No one really knows. There were rumors of Jeter’s departure for at least a week prior to the announcement.
Then there’s the issue of “the right way” to do it. Nowhere in the piece does Andy Katz say that Jeter didn’t talk to Stallings or Vandy’s staff in some form. Just that he didn’t go directly into Stallings office and tell him he wanted to leave. Forget that Jeter was already back in Beaver Falls for at least a few days prior — not down in Nashville, Tennessee.
Is that better? Yes. I think so. Face-to-face is always better.
But Katz is essentially claiming that Jeter is being blocked because he didn’t drive or fly back to Tennessee. Meet directly with Stallings and tell him he’s leaving. That a phone call wasn’t good enough, and that is why Stallings is blocking his transfer?
What he is saying is that Stallings is pitching a tantrum and lashing out at Jeter, because he thinks Jeter wasn’t mature in his handling this. Umm, isn’t that rather immature?