Cooke Likely Leaving Nevada

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RENO, Nev. (AP) - Nevada forward Malik Cooke, a sophomore who averaged 9.6 points and 6.2 rebounds while starting every game this past season, has been given permission to pursue a transfer to a school closer to his home in North Carolina, school officials said Wednesday.

Cooke discussed the possibility of a transfer with the coaching staff several weeks before former Nevada coach Mark Fox was hired April 2 as the new coach at Georgia, said Rhonda Lundin, spokeswoman for the Nevada athletic department.

David Carter, a longtime Nevada assistant, was named as the new coach.

"Malik has some family issues, some family responsibilities back home. It has nothing to do with Coach Fox leaving or Coach Carter coming. He may want to be closer to North Carolina," she said about the 6-foot-6 forward from Charlotte.

"He is certainly free to transfer if he wants to," she said, adding that under NCAA rules he would have to sit out a year of eligibility before playing for another Division I school.

Carter has been on a recruiting trip. He was expected to return Friday and meet again with Cooke, Lundin said.