We've known for sometime now that sophomore forward Leonard Washington was leaving the basketball program, because as you guessed it, he didn't get along with head coach Kevin O'Neill. Washington, who was kicked off the team by O'Neill last March, has apparently been deliberating on which school to transfer to for the past four months. I guess there weren't a lot of takers.
Initially, it appeared likely that he would join former Tim Floyd assistant Gib Arnold at Hawaii, but after Arnold signed a recruiting class of eight players, there didn't appear to be many spots available for guys with tendencies to punch future number one overall draft picks below the belt. Maybe, that's why Washington and O'Neill weren't on the best of terms. Or, maybe it was because Washington wasn't too found of the whole academic aspect of USC. Regardless, yesterday's news means that Washington has officially cut ties with USC, he was still taking classes during the second semester, and will be looking to continue his college basketball career in Laramie, Wyoming.
Before his departure, he was expected to play a significant role in the coming season despite a rather subpar 2010 campaign:
Washington's sophomore year under new coach Kevin O'Neill went even less swimmingly, as he started the season on academic suspension and ended it with O'Neill dismissing him from the team.
Washington did relish his role as an intimidator and averaged 6.2 points and 4.4 rebounds coming off the bench this season.
A little surprised that he ended up at Wyoming for Washington is a talented player, and probably could be a contributor on a tournament team as he was a freshman when 'SC did win the Pac-10 Tournament and was a few good referees away from knocking off Michigan State and earning a trip to the Sweet 16.
Nonetheless, I think I speak for the entire Trojan Family in wishing Washington the best of luck in the coming years.