Rumors have been swirling for the past week about the possible departure of guard Adam Leonard from the Eastern Kentucky University basketball team.
And on Friday the sophomore, who has played such a big role in the Colonels’ success the past two seasons, confirmed that he has indeed decided to transfer.
“I think it’s a 100 percent sure thing now,” Leonard said.
But, at this point, Leonard is still unsure where he will play next.
“Right now, I have no idea. I have not a clue,” the guard said. “My parents don’t get to see me much or watch me play, so getting closer to home is the big thing about it.”
The Kansas City, Mo. native says the once-a-year trip to Southeast Missouri State just is not enough.
Leonard has started every game but one in his two years with the Colonels. And the one game was at SEMO this year when he did not make the trip at all because he was sick.
He helped EKU to an OVC Tournament title in 2007 and has been a steady contributor for two years.
Leonard was second on the team in scoring his freshman year with 12.5 points per game and was third this past year at 11.9 ppg. He has scored 758 points in 62 games, has hit 40.5 percent of his shots (249-of-614) and 39.1 percent (179-of-458) from three-point range. He also had 177 assists in two years, leading the team with 91 this season.
The sophomore led the team in minutes played in his freshman year (34.6) and was second this year with (36.1) — right behind Mike Rose with (36.2).
“It’s real hard, I won a championship here,” Leonard said of his decision to leave. “The coaching staff has been good to me. I made some best friends here also. And throughout the community there are all kinds of people I really enjoy and get along with, it’s real hard to get away from them.”
He said the decision to transfer had nothing to do with the program, but he just wants to be closer to his family.
The sophomore was also very successful in the Ohio Valley Conference. Finishing in the top 20 of five statistical categories this past season — 20th in scoring (11.9 ppg); 13th in assists (3.14 per game); fifth in three-pointers made (2.59 per game); third in assist-to-turnover ratio (2.22); and third in minutes played (36.1). He also finished in the top 20 of six OVC statistics his freshman year — 12th in scoring (12.5 ppg); 13th in assists (2.61 per game); fifth in steals (1.67 per game); fourth in three-point field goal percentage (39.5); first in three-pointers made (3.15 per game); and fourth in minutes played (34.6).
His departure gives EKU coach Jeff Neubauer three open scholarships with which to recruit.
“Our first objective is to bring good people and good players to EKU,” the third-year coach said. “That is what we are out there searching for and we will continue to recruit.”