Santino Marchiol Transferred from Texas A&M After Troubling Program Behavior

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistAugust 21, 2018

Texas A&M helmets sit on the 50 yard line before the start of an NCAA college football game against South Carolina Saturday, Sept. 30, 2017, in College Station, Texas. (AP Photo/Sam Craft)
Sam Craft/Associated Press

Former Texas A&M Aggies linebacker Santino Marchiol said he was uncomfortable with some of the rules violations and overall culture he witnessed during his time at the SEC school after Jimbo Fisher took over following Kevin Sumlin's firing.

Dan Wolken of USA Today reported the news, noting Marchiol said assistant coaches gave him and other players cash to entertain recruits during unofficial visits. What's more, the linebacker said he was evaluated along with some of his teammates in June practices that were conducted outside of the NCAA rules.

"I'm not a complainer," Marchiol said of the situation. "I like to adapt to any environment I'm in. I was excited to take on a new challenge with Jimbo Fisher. I was nervous, but I like new things like that. I told my dad, 'I'm going to be his favorite player here.'"

Marchiol ultimately transferred to Arizona—where Sumlin now coaches—but only after he said the new coaching staff at Texas A&M directed vile language at players during practices and mishandled his ankle injury after he underwent surgery.

Wolken explained the NCAA allows transfers to play immediately whenever there are "documented mitigating circumstances that are outside student-athlete's control and directly impact the health, safety and well-being of the student-athlete." Marchiol didn't directly reach out to the NCAA but he mentioned these allegations against Fisher's staff in his statement to Arizona.

Texas A&M released a statement saying it is looking into the allegations with the NCAA and SEC.

The Aggies hired Fisher after he went 83-23 in 106 games at Florida State and won the national championship and two Orange Bowls. He helped maintain the Seminoles as one of the top programs in the country throughout most of his tenure.

By comparison, Texas A&M hasn't won double-digit games since Sumlin's first season in 2012, but it may have more to worry about under Fisher than just returning to prominence on the field.

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