Okay, this is getting way out of control!
I have railed about the transfer craziness that is going on in the college game a couple times already. As a matter of fact, Coach Don and I discuss it on a recent episode of the Everything Fastpitch podcast. But we have crossed the Rubicon people and it isn’t a good thing.
Oregon is the new poster child for the madness that is sweeping the game, with five players, and counting, having decided to leave Eugene and look for greener pastures. Now there are circumstances that are contributing, Coach Mike White left to coach at Texas, a new coach has come in with a new staff, and players often feel loyalty to the coach that recruited them.
Not just anyone is replacing Mike White. Missy Lombardi was a huge part of the national championship program at Oklahoma, and while she’s a new head coach, does anyone believe she isn’t ready to be the head coach?
Am I supposed to believe she isn’t capable of leading the program at Oregon? And that these amazing athletes are being given the short end of the stick because their new head coach only has three national championships to her credit?
I know it sounds pretty damn crazy when you put it that way.
Of course, Oregon isn’t the only school to feel the impact of the new legislation. Arizona State and FIU are a couple others that have lost very big pieces of their puzzle in the past month or so.
Why so much unhappiness? Why so many players looking to transfer? That is another discussion and, probably a series of blog posts. What I can say is that crating a system that allows a player such ease in transferring is not teaching players or coaches the skills of solving problems and overcoming setbacks. Not happy today, go someplace new tomorrow. how will that play out in the real world, not very well!
Should players be able to leave when they are in a tough situation? Of course. But there are many times that a player may have been unhappy at a school where they worked through whatever it was that made them unhappy and became very successful and happy at that school.
And what about the school that is left in the lurch? What about the players left holding the bag when their “teammates” decide to leave them mid-year? Take a look at the Oregon roster and tell me who is going to be the starting catcher when they start playing games here in a few months. And who is to say that the exodus is done?
Ask the players who remain in Eugene when they start their season February 7, 2019 what they think of the new system that allowed their team to be gutted mid year. Unless of course, Oregon can work the waiver wire and find some players on the transfer portal to fill their needs.
Where does it end? Nowhere good, I fear!
About the Author: Tory Acheson brings a wealth of knowledge to the Fastpitch Prep staff. He has coached at all levels of the game, including the last 25 years at the college level at the University of Wisconsin – Parkside, Tennessee Tech and Kennesaw State. He began his coaching career at the high school level spending 9 years Whitnall High School in Greenfield, Wis. and is now working as a professional softball instructor.