Good feature in today's Providence Journal about the Rakim Sanders story. Sadly, the story won't end with Sanders playing for former BC staffer Ed Cooley, who has left Fairfield to take the head job at Providence. After Skinner was fired, Sanders left the Eagles program and Cooley sold him on transferring to Fairfield. But now, with only his final year of eligibility left, Sanders will suit up for the Stags while Cooley is coaching the Friars in the Big East.
Yesterday, I joked on Twitter that Sanders should consider transferring back to BC, sit out another year and play his senior year in year seven. I seem to have forgotten that you can't do this, since the NCAA only gives a player five years to play four. So even if Sanders wanted to transfer to Providence or back to BC, his collegiate eligibility would end before he could play out his senior year.
For his part, Cooley is apologetic and saying the right things about the situation.
"In a Dickens story it would be different," said Cooley. "I sold Rakim on Fairfield and I don't think he should be anywhere else but Fairfield."
"Rakim has overcome a lot of obstacles in his life and he's a wonderful person. People don't appreciate that he's a loving and caring person," said Cooley. "I feel for him because he felt he found a situation that was perfect for him, but whoever the next coach at Fairfield is will be happy to have Rakim."
Fairfield is coming off a school-record 25 win season that included an outright regular season MAAC title and a trip to the NIT. The Stags eventually bowed out of the Second Round of the NIT to Kent State. Fairfield will be considered a favorite to repeat as MAAC champs due to the additions of Rakim Sanders and Houston transfer Desmond Wade. I'll certainly be rooting for Fairfield to make it back to the NCAAs for the first time since 1997.
Sanders finished his BC career with 1,048 points, 377 boards and 154 assists in 88 games. He's one of only 39 players in school history to eclipse the 1,000 point mark.