Freshman guard Belardo considering transfer
TAMPA -- Freshman guard Gaby Belardo, who did not play in USF's second exhibition Monday and is likely facing sparse playing time this season, is considering transferring from USF after this semester, his AAU coach said.
Art Alvarez, who coached Belardo for three seasons with the Miami Tropics, said Tuesday night he had spoken with Belardo's father and that the family was considering a transfer. He said he expected Belardo to make a decision as early as Wednesday.
Belardo, a 6-foot-3 guard from Puerto Rico, signed with USF in May. With four veteran guards splitting minutes and freshman Justin Leemow seeing more playing time in the preseason, Belardo isn't likely to play a significant role this season. He played 10 minutes in USF's 80-41 win against West Florida in the team's exhibition opener, scoring two points.
If Belardo were to transfer at the semester break, he would be eligible in December 2009, and after sitting out the first month of next season at his new school, would have the remainder of the season and three more years of eligibility. He could not be reached for comment Tuesday night.
USF coach Stan Heath has seen significant turnover among the Bulls' reserve players since becoming the Bulls' coach in April 2007. Six other scholarship players have been granted releases and transferred elsewhere, all to smaller schools.
USF is expected to sign two recruits Wednesday in guard Shaun Noriega of North Port and wing Jordan Dumars, the son of former Pistons great Joe Dumars. The Bulls are also in contention for power forward Keith Clanton of Orlando, who is expected to choose USF or Central Florida next week.