LEXINGTON, Ky. – Kentucky basketball player Derrick Jasper, a 6-6 native of Paso Robles, Calif, who has played two seasons in Lexington, has asked for his release from the Wildcats, citing a desire to play closer to home as the reason for his decision
“The decision to transfer is in no way an indication of my experience playing for UK,” Jasper said. “I feel at this point in my life, it is important for me to be close to my family, and I intend to transfer to a school closer to the west coast where I can see my family more often, and they can see me play.
“It was not an easy decision for me to make, since the fans have been so wonderful and very supportive of my teammates and me. I want to thank Coach Gillispie and the entire UK coaching staff for their guidance and support they have given me these past two years. I have grown a tremendous amount as a basketball player, and most importantly a person and feel it is largely due to the people involved with the UK basketball program.”
Jasper played in 20 games for the Wildcats this season after missing the first 10 games of the year while recovering from microfracture knee surgery. He averaged 4.2 ppg and 5.5 rpg.
“It’s a disappointment to lose Derrick, who was fantastic for us both as a person and a basketball player,” UK Head Coach Billy Gillispie said. “He had to battle through some injuries, but he was always willing to sacrifice for the good of the team.
“I appreciate that Derrick was patient and took his time to make certain that this decision was what he felt was best for his future. We wish him all the best. Where ever he decides to attend will be getting an outstanding player who takes his academics very seriously.”
As a freshman, Jasper started 27 games while averaging 3.9 ppg and 3.6 rpg.