In a move that did not come as a total surprise, Georgia coach Mark Richt announced Monday that running back Washaun Ealey has been granted his unconditional release so he can transfer to another school.
"Washaun and I have had several conversations in recent weeks," Richt said in a statement. "We both have come to the conclusion that a transfer to another institution would be in his best interest."
Ealey could not immediately be reached for comment, but according to UGASports.com sources, the rising junior is considering transferring to Georgia Southern, which is approximately 45 minutes from his Stillmore home. As a member of the Football Championship Subdivision, Ealey could play immediately for the Eagles. If he transferred to another Division I-A school, Ealey would have to sit out a year per NCAA rules. If he transferred to another SEC school, league rules dictate he would have to sit out two seasons.
Ealey has played in 21 games for Georgia, including nine starts during his two-year career with the Bulldogs and has rushed for 1,528 yards. Last year, Ealey rushed for 811 yards and scored a team-high 11 touchdowns.
On Feb. 8, Ealey was suspended indefinitely by Richt before being reinstated a month later. Ealey took part in spring drills for the Bulldogs, but saw limited action as he nursed a strained left hamstring. Two weeks ago at a meeting with the Augusta Bulldog Club, Richt told the crowd that Ealey "has a ways to go" before being ready to play again, much less start, for the Bulldogs.