Clarksville, TN – For the third time in just about as many weeks, the Austin Peay State University (APSU) men’s basketball team has been informed that a player from this past year’s team will be transferring from the program.
Rising junior point guard Antwuan Butler announced on his Twitter account on March 26th that after talking with his family he felt transferring would be in his best interests.
Butler joins fellow starter Eli Abaev and reserve Sam DeVault as Governors on the 2019-20 to transfer, with Abaev returning to the State of Florida to play for Atlantic Sun Conference’s Florida Gulf Coast, while DeVault heads Bellarmine – who is currently making the transition to the NCAA Division I level from Division II and will also play in the Atlantic Sun Conference.
While Butler hasn’t found a landing spot yet, the Philadelphia, PA native is rumored to have gotten interest from the likes of Coppin State, Delaware, Drexel, Hofstra, Holy Cross, Morgan State, Rider, Saint Peter’s, Southern Illinois, Towson, UMass-Lowell and Wagner.
With Butler’s departure, this leaves the Governors with two currently returning guards that played considerable minutes last season in rising sophomores Carlos Paez, who averaged 6.5 points and 3.5 assists in 24.6 minutes per game and Alec Woodard, who averaged 4.3 points and 0.8 assists in 16.5 minutes per game.
So, while the cupboard isn’t bare by any means, its depth at the position has been cut into and an injury could deplete it to dangerous levels with other returning guards either being more of a wing/shooting guard – like Jordyn Adams — or not having a lot of time on the court due to injuries.
And while there is no question that coach Matt Figger and his staff have a possible replacement that they could go after, the dead period that the NCAA has put on recruiting has also limited their abilities to go out and see likely other promising talent they may not have seen at this point.
But bottom line, despite the losses suffered with graduation and the recent transfers out of the program, the Governors return the Ohio Valley Conference Player of the Year in Terry Taylor and Adams, who joined Taylor as a First-Team All-OVC pick last year, as well as being the conference’s Freshman of the Year along with Paez and Woodard, who recorded 23 starts out of the 33 games played last year the foundation is still strong and one that could once again challenge for a OVC title.