Rushel Shell transfer rumors: Pitt coach gives star RB 'time away'

US PRESSWIRE

The star running back is rumored to be transferring, but head coach Paul Chryst said he's still with the team, just taking some time away for now.

Pitt head coach Paul Chryst released a statement on Thursday addressing the rumored transfer of running back Rushel Shell. That statement reads, in its entirety:

Like many college freshmen, Rushel is working through some challenges right now. As it is for all members of our team, my most important concern is his personal well-being. Rushel and his family have our full support.

We are giving him time away from football to work through this situation but he very much remains a part of our family on a daily basis. We want to be sensitive and respectful of Rushel, and I would ask others to do the same.

Shell, a sophomore from nearby Aliquippa, PA, signed with the Panthers last year, and was one of the more highly regarded running back prospects in the nation.

It's unclear at this point what spurred these rumors. It certainly isn't an issue over playing time, since Shell was considered by many to be the starter heading into the 2013 season. He also has twin one year old daughters, which would make any transfer away from home a complicated ordeal.

One of the transfer destinations he is reportedly considering is Arizona State, which would go over quite poorly, as the Sun Devils are coached by the former Pitt coach and quite-unpopular-in-Pittsburgh Todd Graham.

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