Tramon Mark sent shockwaves through the college basketball world when he announced on Saturday afternoon that he intended to explore the NBA Draft and would also enter the transfer portal. It is unlikely that Mark will be drafted and therefore, will find another D1 school to play at next year.
Tramon was expected to play a crucial role on the 2023-24 team. The official word is that Mark “ will leave the program for personal reasons.”
UH acknowledged the news in a press release with a curt Kelvin Sampson quote two hours after Mark’s tweet.
“Houston Basketball thanks Tramon for all his contributions to our program during the last three seasons. We wish him and his family all the best in the future,” Sampson said.
His words today are eerily similar to the those given when Caleb Mills left the program in January 2021.
“We thank Caleb for his contributions to our program during his time at Houston and wish him and his family the best in the future.”
The implication, as it was with Mills, is that Mark is listening to the wrong people. But while this has some of the same hallmarks as Mills, it’s unlikely to be addition by subtraction, as Mills’ midseason exit was. UH stormed through their bracket and made the Final Four just over two months after Mills left.
This is likely more like when Armoni Brooks left and Sampson saw him having an important role in the program still and thought it was a mistake.
Some inside the program seemed surprised by the announcement, despite a few muted rumors the last couple of weeks. Others believed this was coming for awhile. There’s a thought that UH was recently recruiting for his scholarship to open up.
It seems that NIL could play a part in the decision but, early on, it’s unclear what role it had.