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Nicky Galasso is keeping his options open. The question is, what are those options?
Once word started to filter out that Nicky Galasso -- formerly of North Carolina, now of limbo and other such nebulous places -- was speaking to Syracuse, there was a feeling that things were accelerating quicker than had originally been intended, especially in light of Galasso's comments about feeling uncomfortable with the pressures inherent in early recruiting (something that Galasso faced while at West Islip).
As it turns out, Galasso is, at least in theory, attempting to go about his transfer business in a pragmatic way. As Inside Lacrosse's Terry Foy notes in a "Q&A" with the attack-without-a-country, Galasso isn't totally locked into the Orange and is likely going to see what's out there for him:
Would you consider a school on UNC's schedule and sit out next spring?
Yea, I'd have to think about it. I would think about going home and possibly taking classes.
Would a DII or DIII school potentially be in the mix?
I think I'm going to stay away from the DII or DIII schools right now. If I don't find a place that I fit in or find comfortable, that's a possibility, but I'd like to stay at the highest level in DI and improve my skills.
It's been reported that you've spoken with Syracuse? What are your thoughts on joining the Orange?
I'm looking at Syracuse, but all the options are open. That's a great program, and I could see myself playing at a program like that. But I have to see what other programs and coaches have to offer.
It's pretty clear at this point that the only definite in the Galasso situation is that he wants to get out of North Carolina after he finishes up this semester. Whether you believe that Galasso is looking to get out of Chapel Hill because of his playing situation with Sankey, Holman, and Bitter in-close or if North Carolina just wasn't the place he wanted to be to begin with due to the functions of the early recruiting machine, neither really matters at this point. All that matters right now is that Galasso, unequivocally, wants out and he's now trying to find the perfect place to play. A Galassopia, if you will. And the list of candidates is potentially longer than Syracuse University.
(To be honest, there aren't "perfect" situations out there. You find a place that's comfortable and you make the best of it. That's college. There's no rush, but this also isn't a finger-on-the-nuclear-launch-button kind of decision either. Galasso will be fine wherever he ends up; the world just seems, from his comments, to be spinning a little too quickly for him right now.)
So, with the entirety of higher education potentially opening its arms to Galasso, where does the attack end up? I have no idea; if I did, I'd charge you important subscription fees that would pay for a blogging yacht. In fact, I'm not sure anyone has a definitive answer to that question right now, although Syracuse -- because it has been the only school mentioned right now -- is probably the handicapped leader. Lacrosse Magazine's Cory McLaughlin attempted to put together a list based on where he thinks Galasso may end up relative to his conversation with Galasso this week (I'll crop the first three listed schools; read the entire piece for the full run):
A team spokesman confirmed to LaxMagazine.com that the Orange are talking with Galasso about a possible transfer there. When I spoke with Galasso, I mentioned the possibility of Syracuse, and his response was to say he didn't want to get into talking specifics and he wanted to keep his options open. But Galasso would seem a natural fit with the Orange, who are looking to add juice to its offense. Galasso still wants to compete for national championships and, of the schools on the rest of the list, the Orange provide the best opportunity to do that. It's also in New York, although it's quite a trek to get upstate from Galasso's hometown of West Islip on Long Island.
Galasso said he thinks Hofstra is "too close to home" – it's roughly 20 minutes from his hometown of West Islip – and he wants the "college experience," but it's not wild to think minds can change. I'll concede it's a long shot, however. Although he wants to be closer to home, he doesn't want to be so close to home where he would be hanging around his four brothers in all his free time, which could happen on Long Island. But I have to think suiting up in the blue and gold is still a possibility. The Pride were in consideration when Galasso verbally committed to North Carolina before his junior season, but again, he wanted to have the away-from-home college experience. Hofstra was also on North Carolina's schedule last season.
It's a five-hour drive without traffic from West Islip to State College, Pa., and more importantly, Penn State coach Jeff Tambroni is considered by some the best coach in the country, and he's an offensive mind. The Nittany Lions are trending up and Galasso may speed the national contender process along. Penn State played North Carolina last season, but neither school has released its 2013 schedule.
I have to say, Penn State is an interesting opportunity. I hadn't thought about the Nittany Lions as a potential landing spot for Galasso. If he's looking for a quiet spot where he can play right away and still play at a high level, Penn State does provide a unique opportunity. It'll be interesting to see if/how that situation plays out.