And like that, Eastern Michigan is the stablest of the MAC Michigan teams. Even though Steve Hawkins seems to be sticking around, Graham Couch poked his head back into the WMU beat and made a couple shattering announcements about Broncos basketball: Flenard Whitfield is going to play football and Matt Stainbrook is transferring.
Whitfield is already an outgoing senior so it looks like he's just banking his fifth year on football eligibility. Cool story there. But Stainbrook was primed to be the centerpiece of a team looking to bounce back next year in a thin MAC West division.
Replacing him may not be difficult, although the dynamic will change. Shayne Whittington is also listed as a center, and has two more years of eligibility, but he's much lankier (6'10", 220 pounds listed)
We around these parts are going to miss Stainbrook terribly. Yes, his game. At times it'd be unstoppable. One game I saw him score 12 points in the first 4:06 then muster two more points the rest of the way in a 10-minute span. The very definition of hot and cold. And then he was just a player who added some hilarity. His pulled-back blond hair. Those spectacles. The way he ran up and down the court with that huge body. Can't. Look. Away.
I don't know how much pure talent Stainbrook has, but he's got the size at 6'9", 290 pounds to be an inside force for any team. And compared to many other bulky centers, he does have some effective post moves. Should another program bring him in, I'm pretty sure he can contribute. With any good fortune this isn't the last we've heard of him. And of course I previously said that about Toledo's Malcolm Griffin.
We'll miss ya, Stainbrook. If someone recommends laser eye surgery or contacts to you, decline the advice.