The Bill Edwards era, such as it was, has come to an end at Miami University. According to a release from the RedHawks' athletic department, Edwards will graduate this weekend and seek a sixth-year waiver to play one more year at another school. John Cooper and the rest of the staff have agreed to help him through that process.
Edwards' sixth-year plans were the focus of much will-he-or-won't-he talk this season. Although his career has been plagued by injury -- in the end, he will have played just 24 games in three years for the RedHawks -- he was by far the most experienced returning big man for Miami, which is also losing Will Felder to graduation.
The addition of JUCO bigs Chris Bryant, Leonard Livingston, and Kalif Wright, each of whom comes in with two years of organized basketball, considerably helped the RedHawks' depth and experience in the paint. At that point, Edwards may have seen the writing on the wall: with a new crop of forwards hopefully ready to step in right away, why spend a sixth year in Oxford even if he could get one? Especially since, per the school, he's graduating this weekend. (This fits in with message board scuttlebutt that the injured Edwards skipped out on watching Miami games from the end of the bench in order to see his younger brother play high school games.)
As for what would have been Edwards' scholarship, the conventional wisdom now is that it will go to walk-on center John Hawkins. But given Cooper's success on the JUCO recruiting trail even at this late date, it's tough to say.
So, in the end, the story of Bill Edwards at Miami will be one of untapped potential. Who knows how good he could have been if he'd actually stayed healthy for a season? Instead, he joins fellow 2009 Middletown High School graduate Allen Roberts as a player who just didn't fit John Cooper's plans.