Photo by Juliana Bledsoe/Nevada Sagebrush

By Alexa Ard

It looks like Cole Huff chose the wrong school to sign his soul over to.

On April 1, Clint Parks, Huff’s former AAU coach, announced that the sophomore requested a transfer from Nevada via Twitter. With Burton graduating, this news clouded the ounce of hope that Wolf Pack fans had left. Huff was the player who would have been “The Man” next season, the go-to guy, the one who could have taken the reins as the leader of the Pack. He competed with a quiet confidence as the team’s second-leading scorer this past season. He was someone whom I thought always appeared so sure of himself, something I’ve always admired.

I was waiting for someone to say “April Fools” when I saw the news of his request to transfer on Twitter. I know many people, including myself, were caught completely off guard. Huff was the last player people were expecting to pack up and go.

This marks the fourth player to transfer from Nevada under head coach David Carter in just two years. The three other players were Kevin Panzer, Jordan Burris and Devonte Elliott. In addition to the three transfers, Jordan Finn and Patrick Nyeko were dismissed from the team. The 2012-2013 transfers were not necessarily key to the Nevada lineup. However, they were still players who chose to leave the program with only one year left.

Carter is now catching real heat as one of the Wolf Pack’s greatest athletes requests to leave. Even worse, Nevada has placed restrictions on where Huff is allowed to transfer, which Huff has attempted to appeal.

As of now, he cannot compete in the Mountain West, PAC-12 or West Coast conferences. This leaves only the Big West and Big Sky conferences as options if he wants to stay on the West Coast, unless he waits until the 2015-2016 season, when he goes on scholarship.

Carter might as well stamp “Property of Nevada” (in bold) across Huff’s forehead. I suppose that is what the student-athletes have become, right? Just something for the school to brand, market and make bank off of.

Carter sent out a statement through Nevada Athletics media services regarding Huff’s request to transfer three hours after Parks posted the news through a tweet.

“Cole Huff has been a good player for us,” Carter wrote. “He and I have talked, and he has indicated a desire to play closer to home. While shocked and disappointed by his decision, we wish him the best.”

Funny how one of the “reasons” is listed as “a desire to play closer to home,” and the head coach then proceeds to bar the Altadena, Calif. native from the top conferences on the West Coast.

However, I don’t think that’s even one of the reasons why he has chosen to transfer. I believe the main reason for Huff’s decision is the fact that he has been playing out of position since he put on a Nevada jersey in 2012. At the next level of the NBA, Huff would be playing more on the wing as a small forward. Carter has him at power forward because he hasn’t been able to recruit true bigs who can dominate.

Obviously, winning is first on Carter’s priority list, but contributing to the athlete’s future is also important. I think it’s also clear that the six-foot-eight and 205-pound Huff should not be stuck at power forward to begin with.

It has been a lose-lose situation for the sophomore. Play out of position at Nevada, or request to transfer and then be barred from most of the West Coast. Nice.

I suppose one positive for Huff was that at least he was moved into the starting lineup as a freshman, even if it was at a spot that wasn’t really his position.

Parks took to Twitter to express his thoughts on the restrictions placed on where Huff can now play, and I agree with him:

“David Carter trying to prove a point (when) he should worry about getting the program back where Trent Johnson and Mark Fox left it #FreeColeHuff”

I hope future Nevada men’s basketball recruits realize signing to Nevada means signing your soul over. So choose wisely.

Alexa Ard can be reached at