Calipari's Departure Could Send Recruit Cousins to Washington

Seattle SportsnetCorrespondent IApril 1, 2009

The backlash of John Calipari’s move to Kentucky has reached Seattle.

The former Memphis coach indirectly bestowed the gift of hope upon University of Washington basketball fans when he switched employers Tuesday.

Hope in the form of 6′10″ high school center DeMarcus Cousins, the number-four prospect in the country who has reopened his recruiting process following Calipari’s departure.  Cousins had  committed to attend Memphis, though he had not yet signed a National Letter of Intent.

A potential “one-and-done” player, Cousins had Washington and Kansas State on his short list of destinations before committing to Calipari and Memphis.  With Memphis likely out of the picture, and Kentucky already two scholarships over the limit, K-State and UW have to be considered favorites to land the talented big man.

Of course, Washington has scholarship issues of its own.  With three departing seniors, and four incoming players, the Huskies are already one scholarship over the limit for the '09-'10 season.  One of those scholarships will likely be freed up when junior center Joe Wolfinger transfers, as he has previously stated he will do.  That means that in order to accommodate a player like Cousins, Washington would need to make one more free ride available.

Is it worth asking a player to transfer or relinquish his scholarship for one season of DeMarcus Cousins?  With a strong nucleus returning, and the number two point guard in the nation arriving in the form of Abdul Gaddy, it’s a risk most Husky fans should be willing to take.  Let’s get this guy.