MHERST - Rumors that former Pioneer Valley Regional basketball star Adam Harrington is unhappy at North Carolina State and is considering transferring to the University of Massachusetts have been running rampant throughout Western Mass. recently.
Channel 40's Scott Coen broadcast that rumor Tuesday on the 6 p.m. news, saying, "Adam Harrington will likely be leaving North Carolina State and may enter UMass in the fall."
Coen emphasized that nothing has been made official.
If the rumors are true, Scott Thayer, a friend of Harrington's and an assistant coach at Pioneer during Harrington's high school career, said he doesn't know anything about it.
"We talked the other day. We didn't discuss it and he didn't bring it up," Thayer said of Harrington. "He's just focusing on the NIT. They play Providence on Wednesday."
According to Thayer, Harrington battled, and overcame, homesickness.
"He's gone through the same homesickness that all kids go through," Thayer said of Harrington, a freshman. "He came from a tight-knit community where everybody cared about him. Those bonds were built over 18 years and that can't be replaced in six months. So he missed his family and friends as all kids do, but he got over that."
Thayer said he has heard the rumors.
"I've heard the rumors and I heard that someone said he was going to transfer back to UMass," he said. "I don't think he is going to transfer, and if he was going to, I don't think it would be there."
A. Sherrod Blakely, who covers North Carolina State for the Raleigh News and Observer, shared Thayer's assessment.
"I've heard the rumors down here, too," he said. "But as far as I can tell, there was nothing to it. He was homesick for a while but I talked to him about it and he said there was nothing to it."
Harrington's production on the court has tailed off lately, and he was moved from the starting lineup to the bench. After scoring in double figures in his first 12 games, he has only scored more than 10 points three times in the last 12 games.
"The problems he's been having are not with what the coaches are doing," Blakely said. "He's just not making shots. But he still has the green light to shoot when he's out there."
If Harrington, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard, does decide to transfer, his parents would have to contact the school he chooses and that school then would have to obtain permission to contact him.
ore voices weighed in on the Adam Harrington watch Wednesday, including that of Harrington himself in a prepared statement, but little was clarified.
Rumors have been swirling that the former Pioneer Valley Regional star was considering transferring from North Carolina State to the University of Massachusetts.
The NC State sports information department issued a statement from Harrington, a 6-foot-5 guard/forward, who expressed contentment in his current situation, but didn't mention anything beyond this season.
"I am extremely happy here at NC State," Harrington said. "I've gone through the ups and downs that most freshmen do and I'm looking forward to ending the season positively in the NIT."
During the final installment this season of his weekly radio show, UMass coach Bruiser Flint said he'd heard the rumors, but had not heard from Harrington.
"He hasn't called our office," said Flint, who had just returned from a Midwest recruiting swing. "He would have to call our office and then we would have to call NC State to get permission to talk to him."
Harrington and the Wolfpack played in a first-round National Invitation Tournament game Wednesday, where they beat Providence, 92-86. Harrington scored 18 points.
They will take on Princeton early next week, at a time and date to be determined.
reporter who covers North Carolina State University men's basketball said Adam Harrington has told him reports of his imminent transfer are untrue.
"He told me they were false," said A. Sherrod Blakely, who covers the Wolfpack for The Raleigh News & Observer. "He wasn't upset or anything. He started smiling when I asked him."
Harrington, a 6-foot-5 shooting guard from Bernardston, scored 2,347 points at Pioneer Valley Regional School of Northfield. A report Tuesday by television station WGGB (Channel 40) said Harrington would likely leave North Carolina State and might transfer to the University of Massachusetts, which unsuccessfully recruited him in high school.
"I love North Carolina State," Harrington told Blakely Wednesday night after the Wolfpack beat Providence 92-86 in the first round of the National Invitational Tournament. "Every freshman has their struggles. Right now, I'm playing as hard as I can.
"I love it here right now," Harrington said. "It's a great place, a great community."
Harrington's comments were similar to those he gave to the North Carolina State sports information office earlier this week, and indicate the homesickness he felt at midseason had subsided.
The Wolfpack faces Princeton Monday in the second round.
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MHERST - As had been rumored in early March, former Pioneer Valley Regional star Adam Harrington is indeed leaving North Carolina State.
The NC State sports information department confirmed Thursday that Harrington, a 6-foot-5 swingman, and teammate Keith Bean have decided to leave NC State.
"Although I enjoyed some special moments this past year, I feel I need to make a change that is best for for me at this time," Harrington said in a statement released through the school's sports information office. "I appreciate the support given to me by the coaching staff, my teammates and the fans and I am grateful for the opportunity to have played at NC State. I wish coach (Herb) Sendek and the team nothing but success in the future."
Harrington apparently has not chosen a new school, although the University of Massachusetts appears to be in the running. As a transfer, he would have to sit out the 1999-2000 season.
In an interview with the News & Observer of Raleigh, Harrington emphasized he was not bitter about leaving.
"I can't say much other than it's for the best," Harrington said. "I'm definitely not bitter or mad or anything. That's the most important thing people need to understand."
Harrington was the Wolfpack's leading scorer at 11.6 points per game, but his scoring numbers tailed off considerably later in the season.
Sendek and Athletic Director Les Robinson echoed the tone of amicable departure.
"Although we are disappointed that things did not work out, we recognize that this is probably better for all parties involved. We certainly wish each young man the best."
According to the News & Observer, UMass and Missouri are Harrington's likely choices.
Pioneer Valley head coach Perry Messer said Thursday that he hadn't spoken with his former star player since he made the decision, but that he planned to speak with him soon.
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The schedule for 1999-2000 continues to take shape for the Minutemen, with several big-name schools on the docket.
According to UMass coach Bruiser Flint, the Minutemen will play Florida State, likely in Miami, as part of a double-header. North Carolina would play Miami in the other game.
The Minutemen would travel from Miami to the Puerto Rico Holiday Classic.
The field for that event has been set as well. In addition to UMass, participants include North Carolina-Charlotte, Boston College, Tulsa, Illinois Chicago, Southern Illinois, Tennessee, and a team from Puerto Rico.
The Minutemen also will face Marshall, Villanova, Michigan, Providence, Connecticut, Iona, Texas, Detroit and Boston College.
A game with in-state rival Boston University is also a possibility, but that game has not yet been finalized.
* * *
Sophomore Guard Rafael Cruz, who decided to transfer from UMass last week, has expanded the list of schools he is considering.
Flint is helping Cruz and has contacted Youngstown State, Hartford and Buffalo on his behalf.
"He's a good kid, he just felt as though he wouldn't play as much as he wanted to," Flint said.
* * *
The Ajmal Basit American Tour made a stop at Georgia State last week and will visit Delaware this week. The former Minuteman, whose name has been linked to a number of schools, is visiting some of them before he decides where he will play his senior year.
* * *
Flint wasn't surprised about former Rhode Island coach Jim Harrick's departure to Georgia, but he was disappointed to see a friend leave the conference.
"I knew he wanted to get out," Flint said. "But I liked him. He was great to me. He was one of the coaches in the league that would call me up during the year and say, 'Hey man, we all go through this.' Actually I knew on Saturday at the Final Four that he was leaving because he was two doors down from me at the hotel and he actually talked to me about it."
dam Harrington is leaving the North Carolina State University men's basketball program, but where he is headed remained a mystery Thursday night - though the University of Massachusetts remains in the running.
The 6-foot-4 freshman shooting guard from Bernardston told The News & Observer of Raleigh, N.C., yesterday that he had narrowed his choices down to "four or five shools," but that he had not made his final decision. He hoped to do so within two weeks.
News & Observer reporter Cauldon Tudor said sources in the North Carolina State basketball program have told him Harrington is leaning toward either UMass or Missouri. UMass would be a homecoming for Harrington, who set a Western Massachusetts record with 2,347 points at Pioneer Valley Regional School of Northfield.
The appeal of Missouri is traced to the hiring of Quin Snyder, a former Duke assistant, as coach. Snyder's reputation is high among Atlantic Coast Conference players, including those at N.C. State, Tudor said.
UMass coach Bruiser Flint said Thursday he has not been in contact with Harrington, but he did not dismiss the chance that the player could wind up at UMass.
"All anyone can say is that he's headed somewhere, but we don't know where," Flint said.
Harrington, who would have to sit out the 1999-2000 season if he transferred, could not be reached Thursday night.
"Although I enjoyed some special moments this year, I feel I need to make a change that is best for me at this time," he said in a statement released by the N.C. State sports information office. "I am grateful for the opportunity to have played at N.C. State."
Harrington led the Wolf Pack with 11.6 points per game as his 19-14 team reached the National Invitation Tournament. He was also second on the team in assists (51) and steals (39).
Harrington was one of two Wolf Pack players who are leaving the program for undeclared destinations. Keith Bean, a 6-8 reserve, is also transferring.
"Although we are disappointed that things did not work out, we recognize this is probably better for all parties involved," N.C. State coach Herb Sendek said in a statement. "We are not in a position to make further statements."
dam Harrington, one of the most storied players in the history of Western Massachusetts high school basketball, has been granted his official release from the North Carolina State University men's basketball team.
The former Pioneer Valley Regional great leaves N.C. State after his freshman season, where the 6-foot-4 shooting guard led the 19-14 Wolfpack in scoring at 11.6 points per game.
"I'm just looking for a better opportunity for me to develop as a person and a player," said Harrington in a phone interview yesterday. "N.C. State is a great place. I had some fun times, but I had to make a move for the betterment of my life."
Harrington chose not to go into details on why he was leaving, saying it would not benefit anyone involved. He did say homesickness was not an issue.
The Bernardston resident, though, said he was 100 percent comfortable with his decision to leave.
The area's all-time leading scorer (2,347 points) will complete his freshman year academically and return to the area in May. In June, he will travel to Miami for extensive workouts.
The 18-year old has narrowed his choices to nine, including University of Massachusetts. Other teams on the list include UCLA, Cincinnati, Miami, Iowa, Auburn, Kentucky, Missouri and Syracuse. He said he has not talked to any coaches.
Harrington will use next season as his redshirt season, and will be eligible to play the three following seasons.
Harrington said he did not regret going to N.C. State, where he made the Atlantic Coast Conference all-rookie team.
"I don't regret anything. I wish N.C. State the best," Harrington said. "In a way, it's like a business. We have to go our separate ways. I'm going my way, and they are going their way."
Before leaving for N.C. State last August, Harrington said he dreamed of reaching the NBA, and felt playing in the Atlantic Coast Conference would help him reach that dream. Even though he will no longer be in the ACC, he still feels he can attain his dream.
"The ACC will always be one of the top conferences," Harrington said. "But the Big Ten had a strong year, and the Big East (Connecticut) won the NCAA championship. College basketball is so competitive.
"The ACC is tough. I can't describe what it was like. I learned so much. I'll take that wherever I go. All I did this year will be beneficial for me as a player."
Harrington said he will be treated like a high school recruit now that he has been given his official release. He will have five official visits, and can also take as many home visits as he wants.
"In the home visits, I'm going to have all the people I'm close to involved," Harrington said. "I'm looking forward to it. I have a chance to play anywhere in the country I want to."