Reports in Columbus today say that 6-3 guard, Ricardo Billings, a 215-pound junior from Detroit, Mich. has stated his intentions to leave the program.
WBNS 10-TV reported early this afternoon that Billings is transferring from Ohio State after 11 games that saw Billings average just 5.5 minutes a game. On the season, Billings is scoring just 1.1 a game.
He came to Ohio State in 2002-2003 after signing from Rogers High School in Detroit where he made First Team All-state, winning the 2002 Player of the Year in the Detroit Public School League averaging 20 points and 12 rebounds a game.
Billings had to sit out his freshman season, however, because he became a Prop 48 casualty, meaning he was not qualified for the NCAA. He was not allowed to play in any games in 2002-2003, and in fact, he was not even allowed to practice.
Last year, in his first season of play as a sophomore, Billings turned in 3.8 points a game, including a career-high 13 against Central Michigan in November of last season.
If Billings does indeed transfer, NCAA regulations mandate he would need to sit out a season, meaning he would not be eligible until January of next year. Unless Billings successfully petitioned for a fifth season of eligibility, he would only have half a season remaining to play.
In order for him to receive an extra year, Billings would need to graduate on time from whatever school he transfers to.
There is no word on what schools would be interested in Billings. Bucknuts will have more on the situation as it becomes available.
Press Release From Ohio State:
COLUMBUS, Ohio-Thad Matta, Ohio State men's basketball coach, announced Monday the departure of junior Ricardo Billings. Billings, a 6-foot-3-inch guard from Detroit, Mich., did not practice with the team after the squad regrouped after the Christmas Holiday Sunday. The team returned after a three-day break following a 102-77 victory over Mercer Dec. 22.
Billings was in his third year with the Ohio State team and his
second as an eligible player. He sat out the 2002-03 season while concentrating on academics.
A child and family studies major at Ohio State, Billings appeared in 38 games with eight starts, all during the 2003-04 season. He played 44 minutes this season in eight games.
Ohio State has 11 scholarship players available for the remainder of the 2004-05 season, which resumes at 8 p.m. Tuesday against New Hampshire at Value City Arena.