Update: June 1 – 3:40 p.m. ET
During an interview on Sports Radio 810 Thursday afternoon, Kansas State coach Bill Snyder confirmed he will not grant Sutton his release.
Transcription via GoPowerCat.com:
“It’s my commitment that once we have signed the youngster, that we’re committed to him as long as he behaves himself. I accept a youngster that comes into our program as making a similar commitment with a handshake and obviously a signed piece of paper. I’ve always said a youngster is free to leave, but I’m not going to release the youngster.
“It doesn’t mean he can’t go someplace else and play, he can certainly do that. He wouldn’t be on athletic scholarship for a year’s period of time, but could still go and play and then go on scholarship after that. That’s a choice they have to make. I’ve told the young man, and have told him all along, we’d love for him to stay in the program. Anyways, at the end of the day, that’s always been my policy, as I said. There’s a lot of things being said out there, some of them that I’m not even aware of.”
Original story: June 1 – 12:45 p.m. ET
On May 3, wide receiver Corey Sutton announced his intention to transfer from Kansas State.
Nearly a month later, Sutton told the Wichita Eagle that the school — and head coach Bill Snyder, specifically — has not granted him his release. In fact, Sutton said he gave the school a list of 35 schools he’d potentially be interested in transferring to, but KSU denied them all.
Yes, all 35. That list even included some FCS and Division II options, Sutton said, but KSU did not sign off on a single one. And on top of all that, Sutton said an appeal he filed was upheld by Kansas State on Wednesday.
[More college football from Yahoo Sports: Dr. Saturday’s still-too-early Top 25]
Here’s how he explained the ordeal and his interactions with Snyder, who, at age 77, is entering his 26th season, to the Eagle:
“When I originally told Coach Snyder I was going to transfer he said, ‘Well, Corey, I feel bad that you want to leave, but I can’t make you stay,’ ” Sutton said. “I dropped all my classes, moved out of Kansas and started looking at my options, then I find out they are denying me my release.
“Coach Snyder told me today that when I signed my letter of intent that was my commitment to him, that I was going to be there for four years. I heard that and told him, ‘Coaches can leave. So why can’t a player leave? You made a commitment to me that you were going to treat me the right way and that’s not what you’re doing.’ ”
Sutton later clarified he only dropped future classes and finished the spring semester in good academic standing with a 3.0 GPA. NCAA rules allow Sutton to transfer to another school of his choosing with or without a release from K-State, but he is only allowed to receive financial aid from a different school next year if he receives his release from K-State.
“I don’t have enough money for that,” Sutton said. “(Snyder) is trying to treat me like I am his kid. Why is he treating a 19-year-old like that and trying to change his life like that? I have never heard of anything like this before.”
Sutton apparently has been vocal on Twitter about his displeasure with the situation, including one tweet that read, “Can you stop being a slave master and give me my release?” The Eagle noted a few other tweets, too, but those appear to have been deleted.
Sutton certainly has a reason to be upset if Kansas State has been as steadfast as he is making it seem. Players transfer all the time and schools ordinarily grant releases with a few restrictions. Usually, those restrictions preclude players from moving on to a school in the same conference or on the future schedule of his former school. Even though many schools have been loosening their grip on transfer destinations in recent years, Sutton told the paper that he did not include Big 12 teams or future opponents on his list anyway.
Sutton, who enrolled early last year, played in 10 games last season as a true freshman and caught four passes for 54 yards. He expected to see more action, however, based on what he said were promises from the coaching staff. That was the main reason for his transfer, he said.
“I don’t mind competition, but I told the coaches I only wanted to burn my redshirt if I was going to be involved with half the plays. They said that wouldn’t be a problem,” Sutton told the Eagle. “They told me I was going to start and used me as a starter in practice. They promised me all this playing time. Then the game would start and my position coach would grab me and tell me to stay on the sidelines and that I’m not starting because coach Snyder doesn’t want to play a freshman. I felt lied to.”
[More college football from Yahoo Sports: Big 12 spring practice summaries]
Snyder is one of the most-respected names in the game, but no matter the circumstances around Sutton’s decision to leave, this just seems unnecessarily harsh.
For more Kansas State news, visit GoPowerCat.com.
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