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D.J. Cooper Was Approached By Baylor And Tennessee, Asked To Transfer After His Freshman Year

Ohio's diminutive point guard, D.J. Cooper, has undoubtedly been one of the stars of March Madness so far, leading the Bobcats to their first Sweet 16 since 1964. Cooper was magnificent in upsets of both Michigan and South Florida. He was not, however, unfamiliar with the NCAA Tournament upset, as the Chicago product was an integral part of OU's tourney upset over Georgetown in 2010. With the spotlight back on, reports surfaced that both Bruce Pearl, then coach of the Tennessee Volunteers, and Scott Drew, the coach at Baylor, tried to get Cooper to abandon ship and transfer from OU to their respective schools. That's against NCAA rules, but Cooper and his parents issued some pretty damning quotes on Sunday.

Full quotes after the jump:

Via Brett McMurphy of CBS:

"That [Tennessee and Baylor] was about it," D.J. Cooper said Sunday night after the victory.

Donell Cooper told that former Tennessee coach Bruce Pearl "tried the hardest" to get his son to transfer.

"It was surprising, being my first experience, that schools were wanting me to come play for their programs," D.J. Cooper said. "I didn't want to do that. I wanted to stick with Ohio and Coach [John] Groce."

Cooper was the Freshman of the Year in the MAC before Pearl and Drew allegedly contacted him. Pearl has since been fired at Tennessee for lying to the NCAA about recruiting improprieties, and Drew has had multiple allegations lobbed at him while at Baylor. Luckily for Bobcat fans, he stuck to his word and followed through on a commitment to John Groce. It paid off for all parties this weekend.

Photographs by spatulated, Triple Tri, and chrischappelear used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.