UConn's Randy Edsall on players in the transfer portal: 'They've got issues'

Yahoo Sports
Randy Edsall left UConn for Maryland after the 2010 season before returning in 2017. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Randy Edsall left UConn for Maryland after the 2010 season before returning in 2017. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

UConn coach Randy Edsall is taking a perplexing stance when it comes to transferring players.

Edsall said Wednesday that he believed players who are looking to transfer from a four-year school have “issues” and that he didn’t want to take a player who put his name in the transfer portal from a four-year school.

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It’s an odd position, especially for the football team of a school that needs all the help it can get on the field. And it’s really odd when you combine it with Edsall’s willingness to take transferring players from junior colleges.

“I’d rather go with high school kids or junior college guys,” Edsall said Wednesday via the Hartford Courant. “Guys going into the portal, to me, they’ve got issues. They’ve got issues. That’s why they’re going into the portal. I think if you get people that come in [from junior colleges], those guys have a little more edge to them because they want to play right now. Sometimes these guys from the portal think that they’re enabled and entitled to something. You know, maybe it didn’t work out because you didn’t stay there and finish.”

Edsall left UConn for Maryland after 2010

Edsall’s comments are full of hypocrisy. It makes little to no sense to try to justify taking a transferring player from a two-year school but not a transferring player from a four-year school. And many players in the transfer portal from four-year schools are, in fact, looking to play more somewhere else. UConn would be a great place for players to play more. The Huskies are one of the worst teams at the top level of college football and now don’t have a conference to play in after leaving the AAC following the 2019 season.

But perhaps nothing is more hypocritical in Edsall’s comments than the line about players not staying where they were and finishing. Edsall had two years left on a five-year extension he signed in 2008 when he left UConn for Maryland after the 2010 season. If he’s so worried about finishing things that were started he should have stayed at UConn until his contract was up.

He didn’t. He took more money and a better job at Maryland. And few people can blame him for doing that.

But while Edsall has previously shown awareness when it comes to player-rights issues in college football — in 2018 he said that players should get paid — he’s not showing much awareness with his comments on Wednesday. Players transfer from schools for myriad reasons. And, unlike coaches, those players have to sit out a year unless they’re a graduate transfer or get an immediate eligibility waiver.

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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.

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