LAWRENCE, Kansas — Nicky Collin, Baylor Bears women’s basketball coach, hopes things move forward. Dreuna Edwards I will be able to play this season.
Colin said Saturday after the No. 23 Bears beat the No. 21 Kansas Jayhawks 75-62. On Thursday, Edwards posted on social media about her eligibility status since transferring from Kentucky this spring.
Edwards, who started his career with the Utah Utes, was not eligible for the one-time transfer waiver that prevented him from playing this season, as it was his second transfer. She didn’t graduate from Kentucky, so she wasn’t even eligible to play right away as a graduate transfer.
Edwards said he made great progress toward his degree at Baylor, earning 33 credits since entering school. But in order for her to waive her right to play this season, Baylor needed a signed letter from Kentucky stating that Edwards had no chance of joining the Wildcats. Edwards said it was a mistake because he could have played for the Wildcats.
“They have the right not to sign,” Colin said. “It’s just disappointing to see kids go through what they’ve been doing in the classroom. We have limited time to play this game. It’s all about these kids and their growth and opportunities.
“Dre and I had a conversation that it would be 100% easier to stay in Kentucky. ‘Coach, I want to go to Baylor.’ , worst case scenario, you have to sit for a year to play for a year, and be ready for that one year.”
In his second season with Baylor, Colin will return to the college game in 2021 after coaching in the WNBA. Colin said Edwards is trying to make the most of her time with Baylor and she plans to return next season.
“Dre wasn’t a bad student in Kentucky,” Colin said. “We’ve been talking about her academic progress. Baylor has a 60-hour rule. So when she left Kentucky , she had almost 100 hours. I think you’re right in saying that if they’re going to give you a degree from Baylor, you’re getting more than half the credits from Baylor.
“That’s why she had to work so hard in the classroom. When Dre entered the portal, we called Kentucky and asked about her personality. I understand %.
When asked Friday at a regularly scheduled press conference about Edwards’ situation, Elsey said Kentucky wasn’t preventing Edwards from going to Baylor, but the Wildcats’ compliance office said he had to graduate. He repeated that he explained to her that she would not be able to play this season.
“Dre, along with Baylor and every other school that contacted us, understood that she would not be able to play immediately because she had not graduated,” Elsey said Friday. Compliance dealt with her in March, and everyone was clear what would happen: She would have to sit a year to play a year.
“My priority is this program and the players. Dre decided to leave in March. We moved on, she moved on. And that’s where we stand.”
Colin said Edwards is working on practices to improve for next season and a potential professional career.
“So she has to get into this mode of getting ready for next year,” Collen said. “Do we want her to be? Absolutely not. Do you think she deserves to play this year? Absolutely. I have no problem saying that.
Colin also added another famous transfer, guard/forward Aija Blackwell, still recovering from injuries. Blackwell, who was transferred from the Missouri Tigers, was injured on November 15 and returned for two games on December 15 and 18, but has not played since.
“She didn’t sign a medical release, so I can’t speak to the details.” It’s about extending her career so that one day she can play this game and make money.”