- By Marc Pendleton Staff Writer
JuJuan Rodgers and Sam Towns, both of whom figured to be Springfield High School senior starters in basketball this coming season, have transferred to Pickerington Central.
Both Rodgers and Towns are Columbus natives.
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The Pickerington Local School District on Tuesday confirmed the pair was enrolled at Central High School. The district also includes Pickerington North High School.
Springfield athletic director Mike Dellapina confirmed they had not attended class since school began last Thursday. Efforts to contact Springfield coach Isaiah Carson were unsuccessful.
A 6-foot-2 guard, Rodgers scored a season-high 17 points in the 2017-18 season opening defeat of Tecumseh. However, he suffered an ankle injury and didn’t play again until late January. He averaged 9.2 points.
Towns, a 6-7 senior center, started every game, averaging 5.7 points and 4.4 rebounds.
Springfield was among in the top teams in the weekly D-I Associated Press state poll.
The Ohio High School Athletic Association ruled last spring that transfers are immediately eligible, but only for the first half of a regular season. Transfers are not eligible for the second half of the regular season or the postseason.
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That reversed a previous OHSAA bylaw that required transfers to sit out the first half of the regular season, then were eligible the second half and postseason.
Springfield (21-5) lost to eventual state champ Cincinnati Moeller in a D-I regional semifinal last season. The Wildcats (10-2) were second behind Wayne (11-1) in the Greater Western Ohio Conference National East.
Pickerington Central was a D-I state semifinalist the last two seasons and won a D-I state title in 2012.
Springfield’s leading scorer last season was senior guard RaHeim Moss (14.9 points). He also excels in football and has received multiple offers in both sports. The University of Cincinnati has made a basketball offer to him and Kentucky is among the schools to offer him in football.
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Wildcats senior David Sanford (6.1) and juniors Larry Stephens (5.8), Jeff Tolliver (4.8) and Jordan Howard (3.9) also are key returners.