Former Xavier guard Dez Wells has transferred to Maryland. The 6-foot-5, 215-pound Wells averaged 9.8 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 1.1 assists per game last year, shooting 50.4 percent from the floor and 37.7 percent from beyond the arc.
The Raleigh, N.C. native comes with baggage. He was booted from Xavier on Aug. 3 for a sexual assault charge. When a grand jury later decided there was insufficient evidence to indict, Hamilton County prosecutor Joe Deters took the unusual step of urging Xavier to reconsider its decision.
Many in the Xavier basketball community are outraged by what they consider a knee-jerk reaction to the school dismissing its top returning player from an NCAA tournament team. The school has been sensitive to its image after a brawl last year with crosstown rival Cincinnati. Prior to his release, Wells had a spotless record.
Wells visited Maryland this weekend, attending the Terps 7-6 football victory over William & Mary. He announced his decision Tuesday morning via Twitter. He picked Maryland over Kentucky, Oregon, and Memphis.
Considering the circumstances of his departure from Xavier, it’s likely Wells will apply for a waiver to play for Maryland immediately. Transfers from one Division I school to another are normally required to sit out a year. If Wells joins the team this fall he would be a likely wing starter opposite Nick Faust with Pe’Shon Howard at the point, assuming his surgically-repaired knee is 100 percent.
Wells is the third transfer to land at Maryland this offseason. Former Michigan starter Evan Smotrycz, a 6-9 forward, will be eligible for two seasons starting in 2013-14. Logan Aronhalt, a 6-3 guard, will use his final year of eligibility with the Terps and can play immediately after his graduation from Albany.