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Posted: 12:20 p.m. Sunday, March 31, 2013

Q&A with Ryan Harrow 

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By Doug Roberson

Ryan Harrow announced on Sunday that he is transferring from Kentucky to Georgia State in what may be the biggest "get" in program history.

Harrow is a former five-star prospect out of Walton High who is quick and a solid ball-handler who averaged 9.9 points per game at Kentucky. He does come with some baggage, but none of it seems related to what you would expect from a player who will be moving to his third college.

Harrow started at N.C. State, but transferred to Kentucky because the coach who recruited him, Sidney Lowe, was fired. Harrow averaged 9.3 points in his one and only season at N.C. State.

Now, because his dad suffered a stroke last year, Harrow is transferring again so that he can be close to his father, who lives in College Park.

This may be something that may serendipitously work out well for everyone. Kentucky has a large recruiting class coming in. Harrow needed to return home to be with his dad. Georgia State needed a point guard.

Harrow does need to work on his 3-point shooting. He has yet to crack 30-percent in either of his two seasons.

Harrow said he has started the paperwork to transfer. He has yet to sign his scholarship papers. That is expected to happen on Monday. As soon as that occurs, Georgia State coach Ron Hunter will be able to discuss the transfer.

Here's my guess on next year's year starting five: White, Harrow, Hunter, Atkins and Washington, with Crider coming on as the sixth man. If Georgia State isn't playing a team with a true big man, I can see Crider playing center (something he did a few times this year), and the Panthers going really small and trying to push the tempo.

Keep in mind, we still haven't seen what I think is the true Hunter offense and defense: one built on speed and relentless pressure, similar to what VCU does.

 

I'm going to attempt to produce a podcast in which I discuss the impact Harrow could have. Until then...here's more from today's newsmaker:

Q: Why are you transferring to Georgia State?

A: A lot of the reason is my dad’s health isn’t 100 percent. I really need to be home with him to be closer to him to make sure he’s taken care of.

Q: What happened?

A: He had a stroke and he’s still not right.

Q: When did it happen?

A: Right before the season.

Q: Was that why you left the team?

A: That was some of the reason, yes.

Q: Are you excited about this opportunity at Georgia State?

A: Definitely. I’m excited to be back home. This is where I played a lot of good basketball in Atlanta. I hope everybody will come and support us.

Q: Were you familiar with coach Ron Hunter before this process?

A: I’ve known him because of his son (R.J.) and we’ve spoken some. I know he’s a good guy and a good coach.

Q: Do you feel you were treated fairly at Kentucky?

A: Definitely. I had a good time there. I got better there. I built some relationships there. I know next year we would have been really good. It was just real important for me to be with my dad. With him being sick like this, I needed to be there with him.

Q: How long had you been considering transferring?

A: I was trying not to think about it a lot. I didn’t know the severity of the stroke until I saw my dad progressing so slowly. Then I made up my mind that I needed to transfer.

Q: When did that happen?

A: About a week ago. My dad is really into basketball. He wants to be at games but he can’t travel. With me being here I can go and check on him and make sure he’s ok.

Q: Are you still carrying that loss to Vanderbilt with you?

A: No. I know that I have a big part on everybody’s team. If I play well, the team will play well.

Everybody has those games.

Q: So that was just one of those days?

A: Definitely.

Q: Twice you have not played during the season because of sickness. The first was at N.C. State and then at Kentucky. Do you have a health issue?

A: They were two separate incidents. This one was my dad.

At N.C. State I had gotten the flu.

Q: Have you and coach Hunter discussed what position you will play? The team has a point guard.

A: Coach Hunter said we would just play basketball, that I’m a basketball player. He really wanted me to be there.

Q: Have you spoken to any of the players on the team?

A: I’ve been talking to the team (R.J. Hunter, Manny Atkins and Devonta White).  I was watching Wichita State last night and I asked how they felt we measured up to Wichita state.

They said we should be good and we measure up well. They are focused and excited about playing.

Kentucky statement on Harrow

Kentucky coach John Calipari issued this statement on sophomore guard Ryan Harrow transferring to Georgia State:

“Given the health of his dad, we fully support Ryan’s decision to transfer to Georgia State to be closer to his family in Atlanta. Ryan was a vital part of this year’s team and an important player in practice during our 2011-12 national championship run. I want to thank Ryan for his efforts and hard work and wish him the best of luck at Georgia State. I know the Big Blue Nation will keep a close eye on him and wish him well as he continues his basketball career and his pursuit of a college degree.”

Doug Roberson

About Doug Roberson

Doug Roberson covers Georgia State athletics, as well as the annual events in Atlanta, including the AJC Peachtree Road Race, the BB&T Atlanta Open, the Tour Championship, etc.

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