Former Valparaiso forward Richie Edwards didn’t need to explore all of his options to realize that the Arizona State basketball team would be the best program for him to transfer to.
“Coach (Lamont) Smith saw my name on a transfer list, researched me and started recruiting me,” Edwards said, who will sit out next season as a redshirt. “I came there on a visit, and I really liked the campus, the facilities, the coaches and the players … they are just phenomenal, great people. Just everything put together helped me make my decision.
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“I had some other schools in Florida I was looking at, but none of them were as good of a situation as Arizona State was. There were the only school I visited. I came back after my visit earlier this week, took a couple of days to think about everything and decided that this was the best situation for me.”
The 6-7 225-pound Edwards, a native of New Zealand, averaged 9.2 points and 3.2 rebounds per game for the Crusaders coming off the bench. He played two seasons of junior college basketball in Florida and will have one year of eligiblity at ASU.
“The coaches told me that they liked the way I shoot the ball and play defense,” Edwards said. “I’m someone that can bring a spark off the bench and just overall competiveness. At ASU I know I can play at the natural position for me which is a three/four, and that suits my game better because I can go outside or inside.
“I talked to some of the players on the team, like Jahii Carson, and they said how much they have improved under these coaches. So even though I will only play a year there, I know that the coaches at Arizona State can make me a better player.”
Edwards will have to sit out the 2012-13 season due to NCAA transfer rules.
“I think that the year I will sit out will still take my game to a whole different level,” Edwards said. “Sitting out will really give me a chance to develop my body, my skill set, and all that will help me help the team the following year.”