KNOXVILLE - Ex-Tennessee point guard Trae Golden is transferring to Georgia Tech and hopes he won't have to sit out the 2013-14 basketball season.
The Atlanta school confirmed the move Saturday afternoon.
"I appreciate everything that Coach [Cuonzo] Martin and Tennessee did for me," Golden told ESPN. "I feel it's the best move for me to go home to Atlanta so I can be close to my family and help take care of my father."
According to the ESPN report, Golden's father is "severely ill," which could help Golden's chances of being able to play for the Yellow Jackets immediately via an NCAA hardship waiver. The rising senior played at McEachern High School in Powder Springs near Atlanta. His sister graduated from Georgia Tech in 2008.
"Returning home to Atlanta, close to his family, to finish out his college career was extremely important to Trae," coach Brian Gregory said in Georgia Tech's release. "He has proven himself at the highest level, and his experience and ability to score will help us take another step in our program's rebuilding process. We are very confident that Trae will be a great addition and be a positive member of our program and the Georgia Tech community."
A 57-game starter for the Vols the past two seasons, Golden averaged 12.1 points and finished third in the SEC with 3.9 assists per game last season. When Golden's departure was announced in May, one Tennessee source told the Times Free Press it was related to academics, and some reports said his exit was due to multiple incidents of plagiarism. Golden told ESPN he left Tennessee in good academic standing.
"I know there were some rumors," he said. "That's not something I can control, but I'm on track to be the second person in my family to get their degree."
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