Darrin Wagner, the Times’ 1987 San Diego Section high school back of the year, has left the San Diego State football team and intends to transfer, his father said Friday.
Wagner, a freshman tailback from Lincoln High School, has not played in the Aztecs’ first 8 games and apparently was going to be redshirted.
Norman Wagner said his son had been considering leaving for several weeks but did not make his intentions known until this week. Darrin Wagner was not available for comment.
The elder Wagner, who said he did not agree with his son’s decision to attend SDSU, said his son was concerned that the team’s offense was pass-oriented and would not provide a fair chance to showcase his talents.
Coach Denny Stolz said he talked to Wagner about his decision by telephone Friday and plans to meet with him to discuss his plans.
Stolz said the team’s 1-7 record might be a contributing factor.
“You have some of this when you have controversy in the program,” Stolz said. “It fuels this kind of thing.”
Stolz, who has spoken highly of Wagner since the freshman arrived on campus in August, held out the possibility that Wagner would remain. He said he expected Wagner would compete next year with sophomore Tommy Booker for the starting tailback spot that will be vacated by senior Paul Hewitt.
But Norman Wagner said his son’s decision was irreversible “at this point” and said he expected Wagner would withdraw from SDSU “as soon as possible” and transfer to another school. He said the team’s slow start was not a factor in the decision.
Wagner, who ran for county-leading 1,960 yards and 22 touchdowns on 152 carries last season, also was recruited by Arizona, Nebraska and Washington State.