Memphis has removed all conditions from Austin Nichols’s release, allowing him to transfer to any school, the university announced Tuesday.
Nichols announced his intention to transfer last week and Memphis initially refused to grant him a release. The school eventually allowed him a conditional release barring him from moving to certain schools.
The teams on the block listed included every school in Memphis’s conference and all of the Tigers’ 2015–16 non-conference opponents, The Commercial Appeal reported. In-state rival Tennessee and three participants in a November 2016 tournament—Virginia, Iowa and Providence—were also off-limits, the paper reported.
Nichols hired a lawyer to petition for his unconditional release. The attorney, Don Jackson, told ESPN.com on Tuesday that Memphis had barred Nichols from transferring to over 40 schools and that there was “a very realistic possibility this winds up in federal court.”
Nichols was a highly sought-after high school recruit, ranked as the No. 17 prospect in the Class of 2013 by Rivals.com.
The 6'9" rising junior forward averaged 13.3 points and 6.1 rebounds per game during the 2014–15 season. He injured his ankle in a Feb. 7 game against Tulsa and only played sporadically the remainder of the season.
- Dan Gartland