This is an interesting piece by Ray Melick of the Birmingham News. Apparently, Cousins has some difficulties in his high school career that haunt him to this day in Alabama, and combined with his decision not to stay with UAB unless they agreed to mutually terminate his LOI in case of a Mike Davis departure has left a sour taste in some folks' mouths.
The thing with UAB was absolutely nothing for anyone to get upset about. It was a businesslike decision that is being demanded more and more often from high profile recruits, for good or ill. In the case of Memphis, I have no doubt it would have been the identical situation had Cousins opted to sign an LOI, which he did not. I don't like kids breaking their verbal agreements, but they do it all the time whether I like it or not, and it is frequently tied to coaching changes.
More and more, high profile recruits are showing reluctance to sign letters of intent that don't include an agreement to mutually terminate it if the coach leaves. I can totally understand this, and agree with it as long as it is negotiated up front, and I think we will continue to see this trend in the future.
As a practical matter, LOI's are almost always mutually terminated after a coaching change if the player desires it. I like the fact that more and more players are asking for that in writing -- it avoids ambiguities and misunderstandings, and the ethical quandary of breaking one's word in writing because the LOI is with the school, not the coach.