TAMPA, Fla. — When one thinks of basketball power programs, one name that doesn’t jump out is the South Florida Bulls.
Over the past few years, the Bulls have finished in the bottom half of the American Athletic Conference standings, and have been riddled by transfers. During the 2016-17 season, leading scorer Jahmal McMurray transferred despite playing in just three games.
He was averaging over 20 points per contest over those three games.
Then, this off-season, Mike Bibby Jr. announced he was transferring from the program. Add that to the list of things going against the Bulls next season.
However, there have been plenty of things to be excited about as next season slowly approaches. The addition of three transfers, all of whom are immediately eligible in 2017-18 as graduate transfers, have the Bulls trending in the right direction.
CALGARY, Alta. — You get a graduate transfer, and you get a graduate transfer.
Over the past three days, several of the top graduate transfers announced their decisions for the 2017-18 season, causing a big shake-up in terms of the overall rankings. In the process, they all boosted the chances of their respective teams for next season in their own conference races.
Four of the biggest names on the grad transfer market are off the board, so now where do teams look for some immediate production come the 2017-18 season?
Another big name hit the market this weekend, and he averaged over 15 points per game a year ago for the UTSA Roadrunners. Add him to the mix, and there’s still plenty of talent out there, all of whom are eager to find the right fit and help a team play deep into March.
RICHMOND, Va. — What an off-season it has been for the VCU Rams, and it’s only the 22nd of April.
After losing head coach Will Wade to the LSU Tigers, the Rams wasted little time in finding his replacement. They tabbed Mike Rhoades, formerly of the Rice Owls, to replace Wade at the helm. Since then, the off-season has exceeded expectations for VCU fans everywhere.
Shortly after Rhoades was hired, Rice transfer Marcus Evans committed to the Rams. Evans, who was regarded as one of the top transfers this year, will sit out the 2017-18 season due to transfer regulations, and will make his debut in the 2018-19 campaign.
Landing a player of Evans’ caliber would have been plenty for some coaches, but Rhoades wasn’t finished.
On Saturday afternoon, it was announced that one of the top graduate transfers had also committed to the Rams, and will provide an immediate impact in the front court next season.
CALGARY, Alta. — In college basketball, graduate transfers are highly coveted in the off-season.
For power conference teams who feel they are a piece or two away from competing for a conference title, and possibly the national crown, a graduate transfer could plug a few holes that may get them over the hump. On the flip side, smaller programs could turn to graduate transfers to simply fill out their roster for the ensuing year.
This off-season, the graduate transfer market has been filled with some spectacular names. Several of the bigger names have already found their final schools to close out their collegiate careers.
Egor Koulechov has committed to the Florida Gators. Justin Bibbins to the Utah Utes, Stephan Jiggetts to the South Florida Bulls, and Kerem Kanter to the Xavier Musketeers, among a slew of others.
With that said, there are plenty of talented prospects still looking for their new home, all of whom will have a big impact next season with their respective schools.
CALGARY, Alta. — With each passing day, the list of players transferring continues to grow.
The list of transfer players is on the cusp of the 500-mark, and will only increase as the off-season moves along. While players are still making their decisions on whether or not to transfer, several big names have already committed to their future homes.
Marcus Evans and Egor Koulechov, the highly-touted guard duo from the Rice Owls, have both found their respective homes for the remainder of their collegiate careers. Evans followed Coach Rhoades and committed to the VCU Rams, while Koulechov committed to the Florida Gators for next season.
Also, Kerem Kanter committed to play for the Xavier Musketeers next season, is he opts to remove his name from the 2017 NBA Draft and return to school as a graduate transfer.
With that being said, there’s still a ton of talent on the market right now. The talent pool will likely continue to improve as the off-season moves along and new players look for their next home.