Pitt freshman Darnell Dodson has left school and will transfer to Miami Dade Junior College.
Dodson, a 6-foot-6 guard from Greenbelt, Md., had not been allowed to practice with the team while awaiting word from the NCAA Clearinghouse about his eligibility for this season. When he was told that he would not be eligible at Pitt, Dodson decided to leave because he wanted to continue his playing career.
Because he was enrolled at Pitt and taking courses attending a prep school was not an option. Dodson could return to Pitt after his stint Miami Dade, but if that happens it won't be until the 2009-10 season.
Pitt coach Jamie Dixon could not be reached for comment last night. He was en route to New York for today's Big East media day at Madison Square Garden.
Dodson was not expected to crack Pitt's rotation this season, but he was recruited to fill a role. Dodson was recruited as a outside shooter, and Dixon likely will address that in future recruiting because senior Ronald Ramon, the team's top 3-point threat, will graduate in the spring.
Dodson's departure leaves Pitt with three true freshmen -- centers DeJuan Blair and Gary McGhee and guard Bradley Wanamaker -- and one junior-college transfer, center Cassin Diggs. With Dodson incluuded, the group of five players was considered a top 25 recruiting class by several recruiting publications.
Dixon had previously called the class the best during his eight seasons with the program.