Sophomore guard Shaun Lawton may have become the third prominent member of the University of Maine men’s basketball team to leave the program, according to reports Wednesday on WLBZ-TV 2 and WABI-TV 5 in Bangor.
However, the BDN was unable to confirm that Lawton plans to transfer.
“We do not have anything official at this point,” said Laura Reed, UMaine’s assistant athletic director for public relations.
Neither UMaine men’s basketball head coach Ted Woodward nor Lawton could be reached for comment.
Eileen Flaherty, the associate athletic director for compliance at the university, said Lawton has not filled out his transfer release form.
She explained that Lawton must fill out that form to begin the process which would eventually allow him to get permission to talk to other schools and forfeit his UMaine athletic scholarship for the purpose of transferring.
If Lawton does transfer, he would be the third of the Black Bears’ top four scorers to leave the program prematurely within the last two weeks. That would bring to six the number of prominent players who have left early over the past year.
Sophomore guard Dimitry Akanda-Coronel initiated the recent exodus out of Orono on March 27. Then, on Tuesday, All-America East third-team point guard Xavier Pollard, a junior, was granted his release, which enables him to transfer.
Flaherty said both Akanda-Coronel and Pollard have completed their transfer release forms.
The 6-foot-5 Lawton led the Black Bears in assists (4.2 per game), steals (2.0) and turnovers (3.2) this past season. He ranked fourth in scoring at 8.1 points per game.
The Black Bears went 6-23 this past season, the fewest wins for a Maine men’s basketball team since 1956-57.
UMaine also lost its playoff opener for the ninth straight season.