Over the past few days, there has been much speculation regarding the future of Rutgers shooting guard Mike Rosario, who has been looking to transfer in the wake of the reported firing of the Scarlet Knights' head coach Fred Hill. Because of Rosario's relation to USC's Jio Fontan, both were high school teammates at St. Anthony High School in New Jersey, there have been several reports indicating that he could wind up heading west to join Fontan in Los Angeles.
But earlier this week, there was talk that Rutgers was prepared to file tampering chargers against USC and bar the 6'3" Rosario from ever suiting up from the Trojans, which got the folks across town all giddy. However, recent filings from ESPN this afternoon indicate that he could in fact transfer to USC if he so chooses after the school granted him a conditional release that only prevents him from transferring to a Big East school or North Carolina. From ESPN:
PISCATAWAY, N.J. -- Rutgers guard Mike Rosario has been granted a conditional release so he can transfer, meaning the Scarlet Knights can approve what school he goes to.
A source told ESPN.com that Rosario won't be allowed to transfer to a Big East school or North Carolina.
Rutgers' leading scorer started 30 of its 32 games last season, averaging 16.7 points and 3.9 rebounds. But there were rumors during most of the season that Rosario was unhappy at Rutgers.
His departure is the latest part of a turbulent offseason for Rutgers.
Because of his scoring abilities and experience playing in arguably the most competitive conference in college basketball, there is no doubt that adding Rosario to a backcourt already featuring tremendous talents in Fontan, Bryce Jones, and Maurice Jones, would be a significant addition for the Trojans.
Even still, it's not a done deal just yet. Simply because Rosario is able to transfer to USC does not necessarily mean he will end up joining his high school teammate Fontan in cardinal and gold. There are a lot of competitive schools out there that could also be a good fit for him.
But nonetheless, the fact that he is in fact able to transfer to USC to begin with has to be an important victory for Kevin O'Neill, who is aiming to make the Trojans a permanent upper-echelon program in the Pac-10.
In the meanwhile, we'll do our best to keep you posted on this story in the coming days, as Rosario continues to weigh his options.
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