Another wrinkle in the transfer policy debate, this time featuring Mark Richt and Miami

Mark Richt
Mark Richt went 9-4 in his first season as Miami's head coach.

ATHENS — During Mark Richt’s time as Georgia’s coach, the policy was always to let players transfer anywhere they wanted. Then Richt left, and Georgia’s policy changed – and so, apparently, has Richt’s new school.

Miami is not permitting running back Gus Edwards, a graduate transfer, go to Syracuse or Pittsburgh, two ACC schools that are on Miami’s schedule in 2017. The Palm Beach Post reported on the story Tuesday. 

It’s not clear what Richt’s role is in the decision to block. His athletics director, Blake James, told The Palm Beach Post that it’s the school’s policy.

“Institutionally, our policy has been that we would not do that for a school we’re going to play in the upcoming season,” James told the newspaper.

Richt allowed players at Georgia to go anywhere they wanted, including tailback J.J. Green, who ended up at rival Georgia Tech. Richt – and athletics director Greg McGarity – both said multiple times that “life is too short” to restrict players from going to where they want.

But new head coach Kirby Smart put a block last year on tailback A.J. Turman, including to Miami, because Smart didn’t want to set a precedent for players following Richt there. (So far none have.)

However, Smart did change his policy when it came to graduate transfers: Maurice Smith wanted to go from Alabama to Georgia last year, and Alabama (Smart’s former school) blocked it. But Smart said he believed that players who graduate should be able to go anywhere they want, and eventually Alabama relented and Smith ended up at Georgia.

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