Is it time to hit the panic button? Virginia head basketball coach Tony Bennett announced today that another player will be transferring. Redshirt freshman James Johnson is the fourth of Bennett's heralded inaugural six-person class to decide to transfer elsewhere.
"I met with James this morning (Saturday, Dec. 24) and he informed me that he would be transferring," Bennett said in a media release. "I wish him well. Obviously with KT Harrell yesterday and James today deciding not to continue at Virginia I am disappointed. But with that being said, if James and KT feel it's best for them not to be here I think it's better for everyone to part ways."
"I love and respect all the individuals that make up the Virginia basketball program," Johnson said in the release. "They helped me grow in so many ways. The support and love they showed me was unbelievable and it will be very hard to leave this group. However, I feel strongly that it is in my best interest to pursue other opportunities. I will miss the guys on the team as well as the coaching staff a lot and I hope they have a great season."
The 6'9 forward from Wildomar, California played in just six games this season, averaging only 6.2 minutes per game. He has not played in any of the last three games.
Johnson was a McDonald's All-American nominee in 2010 and was a top 100 recruit by both Scout.com and ESPNU.
Is it time for Virginia to start panicking? As readers commented yesterday, the Cavaliers' bench is getting pretty shallow, as there are now just nine scholarship players on the team. Obviously, Johnson wasn't logging in many minutes anyway, but there was certainly a lot of hope and prospect here, particularly considering that many fans called to burn his redshirt last year when Mike Scott was declared out for the season.
Two in two days. Sounds like the Grinch is out to get the Hoos of Hooville once again this Christmas season.