The University of Wisconsin released its first statement on the Jarrod Uthoff transfer case this afternoon in an attempt to clear the air on an issue that has ballooned into a national debate over student-athletes and coaches rights.
According to the statement, Uthoff requested permission to contact 16 schools. The university denied four of those requests. This information is a direct contradiction to earlier reports from Iowa media that up to 26 schools were blocked.
The redshirt freshman forward used the appeals process to challenge three of those contact restrictions, meeting with Associate Athletic Director Justin Doherty and Director of Athletics Barry Alvarez on Thursday morning. Subsequently, the administrators met separately with head coach Bo Ryan, at which point they "lifted 'permission to contact' restrictions on ANY school outside of the Big Ten Conference."
"Ryan is supportive of denials of Big Ten institutions only and has wanted the appeals process to serve as a means for dialogue to occur between Uthoff and UW Athletics administration."
Uthoff may further appeal his Big Ten restrictions by requesting a hearing to the Chair of the Athletic Board within eight business days.
Ryan has been the primary target of outrage in the past few days over the fact that it is legal for college coaches to wield such power over a student-athlete's destination when he or she has a change of heart.