Friends' Central alum transfers to Pittsburgh Swingman Mike Cook played two seasons at East Carolina. He will sit out the coming season.

Posted: August 04, 2005

Mike Cook, who guided Friends' Central to back-to-back Friends Schools League championships his junior and senior years, said yesterday he will complete his college basketball career at Pittsburgh after transferring from East Carolina.

Cook, a 6-foot-3 1/2 220-pounder, played two seasons at East Carolina but left school in May, he said, because of "a whole lot of negatives." He graduated from Friends' Central in 2002.

Cook chose Pittsburgh after also considering La Salle, George Washington and Charlotte. Cook said he has given the Panthers an oral commitment, but expects to complete the paperwork that will make his transfer official this week. A journalism major, he will report to school no later than Aug. 29 for the start of classes.

Under NCAA rules, Cook, who played three positions at East Carolina - point guard, shooting guard and small forward - must sit out the 2005-06 season but may join the Panthers in 2006-07. He has two years of eligibility remaining.

"It was a tough decision to make, but the conference is one of the best in the country," Cook said of the Big East. "That was one of the biggest reasons."

Cook said back-to-back losing seasons at East Carolina, where coach Bill Herrion resigned this spring after six years, hastened his decision to leave. Herrion, who was succeeded by Ricky Stokes, arrived at East Carolina after a successful stay at Drexel.

Cook averaged 10.4 points and 3.5 rebounds per game as a freshman. Last season he averaged a team-high 15 points per game and 4.0 rebounds.

La Salle commitment. Rodney Green, a 6-5 forward who will be a senior at Prep Charter, is expected to announce that he will attend La Salle.

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