Last week, it was reported that Alabama had blocked cornerback Maurice Smith’s graduate transfer attempt to Georgia. On Monday, he finally spoke out about the Crimson Tide preventing his transfer to the SEC rival, now coached by former defensive coordinator Kirby Smart.
He sat down with AL.com and talked about the very strange situation. He said that the whole transfer is not just about him and he wants to see the process through so he can get his final year of eligibility started.
“I believe that this will not only help me but help anyone else who comes into my situation in the future,” Smith said in the interview. “That’s why I say it’s almost bigger than me because not only am I stepping out on faith but I’m trying to get a point across that if you do everything right you should be awarded what is better for you or best for you if that’s something you choose to do.
“There’s really not a deadline. I’m willing to go as far as it takes to play the season at the school that I desire, which is Georgia.”
Last week, head coach Nick Saban spoke about Smith and the school blocking his transfer. He cited the SEC rule that prevents an athlete from transferring to another SEC school, except under special circumstances.
“I know there’s a lot of talk out there and interest in the Maurice Smith deal,” Saban said. “Nothing has changed. We support the SEC rule of not granting guys’ release to go to other SEC schools. It has been our policy here not to do that unless there was a special circumstance.”
The Crimson Tide asked him to stay for the 2016 season, telling him he would be a big contributor if he stuck around this year. However, Smith believes that this has turned into something bigger than just a transfer.
“There’s a lot of adversity that’s been thrown at me, the university, coach [Nick] Saban, and it’s really making it something that it’s really not,” Smith said to AL.com. “I believe it was something that was just as simple as a transfer. But now it’s kind of transpired into something far greater, and a lot of bad things have been coming out of this. It’s just very disappointing because I never meant to hurt anyone. … I just feel like I’ve earned the right to better myself my last year and go into this season without any doubts.
This is certainly going to be an interesting situation to watch for the next few weeks. Smith wants to end his career somewhere, but it certainly seems that somewhere won’t be Alabama or Georgia.
Photo Credit: AL.com