After four years, 89 games and a political science degree, Wayne Sparrow will leave Richmond next month. But the former St. Frances star’s playing days aren’t over.
Sparrow, who redshirted with the Spiders during the 2010-11 season, will spend his final year of eligibility playing for UMBC. The 6-foot-3, 190-pound shooting guard committed to the Retrievers last week.
“I felt as though a different area, a difference scene would be good for me,” said Sparrow, who will graduate from Richmond on May 14. “I had a couple injuries at Richmond, and felt as though I needed a new start. This is my new start. Even though it’s just a year, I feel like I can make a difference.”
A first-team All-Metro selection for St. Frances in 2010, Sparrow averaged 16.6 points, 5.4 rebounds, 5.2 assists and 2.3 steals for the MIAA A Conference tournament champions. Sparrow, a first-team Baltimore Catholic League and first-team MIAA A Conference selection as a senior, committed to Richmond during his junior year.
After redshirting as a freshman with the Spiders (during their last NCAA tournament appearance), Sparrow’s role varied over the next three years. He appeared in all 33 games for Richmond (19-14, 8-8 Atlantic 10) this season, starting 21 and averaging 3.2 points and 2.2 rebounds for the Spiders.
At UMBC, he’ll join a guard rotation featuring soon-to-be-sophomores Rodney Elliott (John Carroll) and Bryan Harris (Southern). The Retrievers lose former Mount St. Joseph guard Quentin Jones to graduation.
“To see Rodney do his thing, that really helped me focus in on UMBC,” Sparrow said of Elliott, the America East Rookie of the Year. “Just from talking to [Retrievers] coach [Aki Thomas], they need more senior leadership. And I feel as though I can bring it.”
Sparrow, who is undecided on what graduate degree he’ll pursue but is considering business, said he’s had a “great four years” at Richmond but is looking forward to a “fresh start.”
“I’m ready to lead the team and get some wins and have an opportunity to make the NCAA tournament,” he said. “I’d like to end [my college career] where I started, and that’s back in the NCAA tournament.”
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