When news broke early Wednesday morning that the University of Oklahoma had blocked Austin Kendall’s transfer to West Virginia it didn’t settle well with a good portion of the fanbase.
Oklahoma’s refusal to release Kendall didn’t necessarily mean that the graduate transfer couldn’t go to WVU, it just meant that he wouldn’t immediately be eligible to play as he should have been.
Kendall deserved better and the university has finally acknowledged that. There’s no reason to be bitter about him leaving. After backing up Baker Mayfield as a true freshman he was demoted to third string, and subsequently redshirted, as a sophomore due to the rise of Kyler Murray. Last fall Murray beat out Kendall for the starting position and then went on to win the Heisman Trophy.
The thought that 2019 would be the first of his final two remaining seasons as Oklahoma’s starting quarterback was derailed this month by Oklahoma’s pursuit of Alabama transfer Jalen Hurts. All Kendall had done since arriving in Norman was wait and now it appeared as if he was going to be asked to wait one more time.
Instead, the former four-star recruit decided to enter the transfer portal in an attempt to find a new home where he’d be given the chance to play. He found the perfect landing spot at West Virginia. Not only was there an immediate opening at quarterback due to the graduation of Will Grier but Kendall was also familiar with new Mountaineers coach Neal Brown who had recruited Kendall as an assistant at Kentucky.
Everything was perfect, except for one thing. West Virginia is in the Big 12 Conference giving the Sooners the opportunity to block Kendall’s immediate eligibility. Blocking Kendall was the wrong move for OU. Not only did it give Oklahoma a Texas Tech type perception it also would make Kendall wait once more.
By the end of the day the university had come around (landing Jalen Hurts certainly helped) and decided to allow the transfer with immediate eligibility. That’s the way it should be, and now Austin Kendall can leave Norman on a good note instead of a sour one.
Looks like Kendall’s patience is finally going to pay off.