Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Morning News: Caleb Swanigan To Purdue, New Rule Changes, Sterling Gibbs To UConn, Seton Hall Lands Derrick Gordon, And More

Purdue has some serious size and length.
Caleb Swanigan Chooses Purdue This saga was going on for a couple of weeks, made particularly confusing by some vague Dan Dakich tweets, but now the original rumors of Swanigan choosing Purdue have come to fruition. Originally a Michigan State commit, the McDonald's All-American gives Purdue a massive front line with AJ Hammons and Isaac Haas. Of course, the question becomes, how do you give all three of those guys sufficient playing time and how do you get them to play together? All three love to play in the paint. And that will be the challenge for Matt Painter.

As we saw with Texas this past season, you get diminishing returns from big men when you have too many of them, with star one-and-done recruit Myles Turner often being stuck on the bench in crunch time simply because there was no room for him in the lineup. As Texas lacked backcourt options this past season, Purdue will need to find improved backcourt play this coming season if they are really going to be in contention for a Big Ten title.

New Rule Changes The NCAA basketball rules committee has recommended a number of rule changes which are likely to be enforced next season, including a 30 second shot clock. If you missed it, I gave my thoughts on them, and their perception.

Sterling Gibbs Chooses UConn This move had appeared to be in the works for a couple of weeks. As I wrote last week, the transfer of Terrence Samuel seemed to be driven by Samuel expecting to lose a lot of playing time to the incoming Gibbs. How much does Gibbs improve this team? Well, Gibbs is a potential AAC Player of the Year, so it's a huge addition. The Top 25 hype that the Huskies are getting seems unjustified, but Gibbs should at least make them a Tournament team.

Seton Hall Lands Derrick Gordon Gordon averaged 9.8 points per game for UMass this past season, though it came with a 40.5 eFG%, meaning he was more of a volume scorer than anything. Seton Hall certainly lacks depth, but considering the number of shots that Isaiah Whitehead will be taking, I'm not sure this is an addition that is going to do a ton for Seton Hall. Still, Gordon is eligible immediately and will help a team that has a reasonable chance of ending up on the Tournament bubble. 

Indiana Boots Hanner Mosquera Perea And Devin Davis The two players were caught with marijuana in their room, though only Davis was actually charged with possession. Mosquera Perea is the more serious loss, having been the team's only rim protector this past season, though the incoming Thomas Bryant should be able to fill that role. Devin Davis did not play this past season after being hit by a car, and he was a relatively minor contributor off the bench as a freshman in 2013-14, so his loss is probably more seen as another scholarship opened. Crean had, unfortunately, already run off three players, so with these two losses he's now at two under his maximum scholarship allotment. Look for Crean to add at least one more player this summer.

Auburn Adds Tyler Harris Bruce Pearl continues to upgrade the talent level at Auburn, now adding Tyler Harris, who averaged 9.9 points and 4.0 rebounds per game for Providence this past season. He'll be eligible immediately for his final year of eligibility. Auburn returns very little from a team that was terrible this past season, but Pearl adds Harris to a very strong and deep recruiting class. There is going to be some hype for Auburn as a bubble team, but I think the smarter projection is to see how well all of these pieces fit together before believing that Auburn can make that large of a jump in a single season.

Stanford Robinson To Rhode Island Robinson wasn't a great player off the bench for Indiana this past season, and he has to sit out the 2015-16 season due to the transfer, but this is yet another coup in the transfer market for Dan Hurley. It remains to be seen just how long Hurley is going to stick around at Rhode Island before leaving for a major conference school, but they are a serious contender for the A-10 title and an at-large bid this coming season, and should stay a contender for both of those things for the foreseeable future.

No comments: