This doesn’t bode well for Kansas State Wildcat Head Coach Bruce Weber. His Second Team All-Big 12 point guard Angel Rodriguez has decided to move on. Rodriguez is the third player to transfer this off season but the first that was guaranteed significant playing time. Angel Rodriguez joins Michael Orris and Adrian Diaz in leaving K-State.
Rodriguez was an impact player for the Wildcats in 202-2013 and was going to be counted on to be the team leader in 2013-2014, as well as in 2014-2015. This past season, as a sophomore, he averaged 11.4 points a contest, 5.2 assists, and 1.5 steals. He was the team leader in 3-pointers, steals, and assists and had elevated his play to an all-conference level. He would have been the star for the Wildcats for two more years.
The Miami Herald reported this morning that Rodriguez’s high school coach, Shakey Rodriguez (no relation) that Angel wanted to play closer to his home in Puerto Rico, and would like to play in Florida, and that Angel did have interest in the University of Miami.
This is quite the blow for Kansas State and Bruce Weber. Rodriguez was clearly the best returning player and team leader for the Wildcats. His departure is much more damaging than than the transfer of Orris or Diaz. Weber has a reputation as a very good coach but a poor recruiter. Losing a player of Rodriguez’s caliber won’t help Weber’s standing with the program’s supporters or future recruits. Rodriguez’s transfer, coupled with the graduation of seniors Rodney McGruder and Jordan Henriquez-Roberts, will make it nearly impossible for the Wildcats to compete for the Big 12 championship, let alone repeat.
Whatever school eventually signs Rodriguez this time around will get a scrappy, heady point guard who improved mightily from the second he stepped on campus in Manhattan. Angel is a fine player who will make anyone team better. K-State lost their best returning player and team leader and it looks like the Wildcats will have some struggles next season.