The momentum transfer problem between a single momentum wheel and a rigid spacecraft is investigated. A feedback linearizing control is used for the momentum wheel. The proposed control law is a function of the spacecraft angular velocity vector components, as well as the inertia properties. The total initial angular momentum of the spacecraft is absorbed into the wheel, so that the spacecraft comes to rest at the steady state. The angular momentum component of the spacecraft and that of the wheel spin axis are selected as the primary control variables. A reference angular momentum history is predefined that leads to a smoothed control torque profile. The proposed control method produces a very small notation angle at the completion of the momentum transfer maneuver. In addition, a two-stage control law switching strategy is proposed to complete the momentum transfer maneuver.