Siena and UAlbany basketball coaches adapt to ‘crazy’ world of transfers

The craziness of the NCAA transfer portal could get crazier.

Siena men’s basketball coach Carmen Maciariello and University of Albany coach Dwayne Killings say they are adjusting.

Next week, the NCAA is expected to allow players to transfer as many times as they want without missing a year. The Division I Board recommended last week eliminating the single waiver that was approved last year. The board still has to approve it.

Under the new rules, a player could play for four programs in four years.

“It will be crazy,” Maciariello said. “I think now, after talking to everyone, you’re building teams for just one year. I’m trying to build them for two or three.”

More than 1,400 players have entered the transfer portal this year, according to The Athletic. It remains to be seen how much that number will increase with the rule change.

Killings said he expects a lot of turnover in college athletics.

“I think the beauty of college was seeing a freshman come in and become a sophomore, a junior, and a senior,” he said. “I think the fans (are) naturally drawn to these players. Now you have teams. You have kids coming in and nobody really knows them from a community perspective and you try to get to know them. … . I do think it’s going to change our business a lot.”

Besides the portal, Killings pointed to name, image and likeness legislation that allows players to search for programs where they can earn money through endorsements.

When the one-year waiver was passed, it seemed like a good strategy for the coaches to tap into the transfer portal with the idea that players who had already been transferred once would stay with their new program for longer. a season.

Maciariello made several transfers last year, including guard Colby Rogers, who made the second team in the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference. But Rogers left the Saints after just one year to go to Wichita State. He will be able to play it immediately once the new rule has been adopted.

“The players are going to go where it feels best for them and all you can do is be honest and talk about what you can do for them and hope their parents appreciate the time you’re there. consecrate,” Maciariello said. “But at the end of the day they’re going to do what they think is best for them, and that’s sort of the free market experiment where we’re at. You have to be comfortable with that and you You have to be able to adapt, adjust and move forward.”

Maciariello said he hopes the players want to stay because of the “basketball-centric community” of Siena, where the Saints have averaged in the top 100 in the country for 24 consecutive seasons, at the exclusion from the COVID-19 season of 2020-21, when fans were not allowed.

Maciariello wondered about players hoping to graduate from college by changing schools multiple times and not being able to transfer all of their credits. Siena has three graduate students on this year’s roster, including Jackson Stormo, who just received his bachelor’s degree from Siena.

“I think there can be a strategy with how you recruit and how you build your recruiting model and how many scholarship players you take each year and if you take recruited walk-ons to build stability as well,” Maciariello said. “You have to continue to be at the forefront and not be reactive but be proactive and I think we’ve done a good job here with that.”

Killings said he will continue to sign high school players and augment them with older transfers that fill a need, like guard Malik Edmead, who has spent the past two years at Merrimack.

“I love it, because what, a kid can go from program to program and strive to be the best player they can be,” Edmead said.

“I think there’s a balance to be found for everyone involved, but it’s going to drive our business a bit crazy,” Killings said. “But I’m just saying to our staff, we try to control what we can.”

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