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Kouassi, Morena to transfer

AUBURN -- Two freshmen basketball players have been released by Auburn and will transfer following spring semester.

Center Willy Kouassi and forward Bernard Morena, who both signed with Auburn out of Central Park Christian in Birmingham, Ala., in 2011, have been granted a full release by Auburn and will seek a transfer according to their coach and guardian Darien Knox.

“The guys are very appreciative of the release and thankful for the support from the Auburn administration, faculty, student body, fans and coaching staff,” Knox said.

Kouassi averaged 1.5 points and 2.6 rebounds in 25 games this year as a backup to junior Rob Chubb and senior Adrian Forbes. Morena suffered a hand injury in preseason practice and redshirted this season.

The departures of Kouassi and Morena along with the expected departure of point guard Varez Ward, who is the subject of a federal point-shaving investigation, will give Auburn room to bring in six players in the 2012 class.

The Tigers signed four players in November and added a commitment from guard Brian Greene a couple of weeks ago.

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