Freshman Davonte Beard has informed Siena head coach Mitch Buonaguro and director of athletics John D’Argenio of his desire to transfer to a school closer to his Akron, Ohio home. Beard has filed paperwork with the athletic department’s compliance office, and the College is processing his request.

“This was a very difficult decision for me,” Beard said Thursday. “I would rather be close to home, close to my mother and my two brothers. It is hard not having them come to see my play. I would rather transfer to a school close to home so my friends and family can come to the games.”

Beard had played big minutes as a freshman at Siena. Through the Saints’ first 10 games he averaged 5.2 points, 1.8 rebounds and 22.7 minutes while shooting 36% from the field and 24% from 3-point range.

“I’m disappointed Davonte felt this was the direction he needed to move in,” Buonaguro said. “He told us he wasn’t comfortable being this far away from his family. I respect his decision, and really hope everything works out for him. He is a good person, who we had high hopes for as a Saint. The reality is he was home sick.”

Coach Buonaguro will speak with members of the media at 3:30 p.m. today in the lobby of the ARC. Davonte has indicated that this quote will be his only statement to the media regarding his decision at this time.

The preceding has been provided by Jason Rich, Assistant Athletic Director for Communications at Siena College.