Keaton Miles to Transfer from WVU - WVU Football, WVU Basketball, News - Mountaineer Sports

Keaton Miles to Transfer from WVU

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MORGANTOWN -

Keaton Miles has been granted a release to leave West Virginia basketball and seek a new start at another program.

Miles, who just finished his sophomore year with the Mountaineers, is the fourth player to transfer from WVU since the disappointing 13-19 season came to a close. He says he made his decision after speaking with both the coaching staff and his family back home in Dallas, Texas.

"I went to [the coaches] and asked them about my role and they said that they wanted me to play defense and rebound and I feel as though I made strides from my freshman year to my sophomore year, but I really couldn't display that for some reason," said Miles.

From year one to year two in Morgantown, Miles' minutes dropped by nearly two minutes per game, while his points per game, field goal percentage, blocks and steals all increased.

In speaking with head coach Bob Huggins and associate head coach Larry Harrison, Miles says he was told his minutes would continue to be limited if he returned for his junior season with the Mountaineers.

"After that bad season we had, I really wanted to work through it and help us grow," said the 6-foot-7 forward, but he was discouraged by the conversations he had in which he felt that his contribution to the growth would be so minimal.

Throughout the setbacks of this past season, Miles sought guidance from his parents, both of whom he has credited for pushing him to become the player he is.

"They just told me to continue to work hard and be positive and that's one of the things that kept me motivated," he said. "After the season, they said, ‘Okay, we have to make the move that's best for you.' I had to go home and really do some talking with them and we came to the decision to move on."

He isn't the first to reach that conclusion. Gary Browne now stands as the only member of the 2011 recruiting class who is still on the roster. Prior to Miles' departure, Tommie McCune, Pat Forsythe, Aaron Brown and Jabarie Hinds all transferred from the program, while Dominique Rutledge – a junior college transfer – graduated.

"With Jabarie being my roommate for two years, seeing him leave before I left was really hard for me, just watching him packing up his bags and then getting back here for summer session and he's really gone," Miles said. "He's one of my best friends in the world and it was pretty much like the relationships with Pat and Tommie and A.B. and all the other guys who came in with me, but not as strong as Jabarie."

The 2013 recruiting class, as it currently stands, features six players all listed at 6-foot-7 or taller, all representing competition for the minutes Miles covets.

Along with leaving behind a basketball program, Miles acknowledges that saying goodbye to the university and the community he has called home for two years will be difficult. He has gotten to the point where he identifies himself with West Virginia.

"I'm always going to be a Mountaineer," he said. "It's really, really tough. I love it here. The relationships that I have here, I'll never forget. I plan to come back here and visit after my basketball career or just to show support. I support the community here and they were an essential part of me growing up as a man and learning and interacting with people."

Miles said he is considering five or six schools that are interested in obtaining his services and he has no concern about going closer to home, so long as he finds the right fit. He will continue to attend classes at WVU through the end of the first summer session in Morgantown. 

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