Dwayne Polee is headed back west.
The athletic, 6'7" freshmen that averaged 4.4 ppg and 2.5 rpg with St. John's this past season will return to his native Southern California, opting to transfer to San Diego State. If Polee had returned to St. John's, he would have been their most experienced player, as he started 27 games as a freshman.
Polee is a solid addition to the SDSU program. He's an athlete that excels in the open floor and should flourish playing in Steve Fisher's open court system. Landing Polee is important for Fisher as well. He is a product of the powerhouse Westchester High program in LA, the same high school that produced SDSU's all-time leading scorer Brandon Heath. Building a pipeline to the Westchester program wouldn't be a bad way to bring in some of SoCal's homegrown talent.
Per NCAA transfer rules, Polee will have to sit out for a year before becoming eligible for the 2012-2013 season. But SDSU will apply for a waiver that will allow Polee to become eligible immediately. Part of the reason that he decided to leave St. John's was that he wanted to be closer to home. His mother will be undergoing surgery for an undisclosed illness.
Toby Veal leaves VCU: In one of the more under-reported moves of the offseason, Toby Veal has decided to leave VCU to "pursue other opportunities". Veal, who began his career at Colorado before transferring to a Junior College, was expected to anchor a talented but inexperienced front court for the Rams. With Jamie Skeen graduating and Veal now gone, sophomores Juvonte Reddic, DJ Haley and David Hinton and freshman Jarred Guest will make up VCU's frontcourt.
"We're very appreciative of Toby's contribution to our program," VCU coach Shaka Smart said in a release. "He is a fine young man, and we wish him nothing but the best in the future."
Keion Bell looking to transfer to the Big 12: Keion Bell was an explosive scorer in the WCC the past three seasons, averaging 18.9 ppg this past season despite battling through injuries and a suspension that cost him the end of his junior year. He declared for the draft, but opted to withdraw his name when he didn't receive the kind of interest he was looking for. Bell just finished up a visit to Missouri, which apparently involved some intense games of pool, and is also involved with Texas A&M and Oregon, according to Jeff Goodman. Bell would have to sit out a year before playing his final season with the Tigers in 2012-2013.
Manny Arop is headed to the MVC: Indiana State has added a quality perimeter player in Gonzaga transfer Manny Arop. Arop, who was never quite able to make is mark in his two seasons with the Zags, is a tough perimeter defender that showed flashes of being a capable perimeter scorer. He should be able to thrive in the more defensive-minded MVC.
Kansas guard heads west: Royce Woolridge, the son of former NBA player Orlando Woolridge and the brother of Tennessee's Renaldo Woolridge has decided where he will be transferring too. After seeing action in just 16 games as a freshman at Kansas, Royce decided to leave the school back in April. Over the weekend, he committed to Washington State. The former Arizona state player of the year should be an impact player for the Cougars when he gets eligible in the 2012-2013 season.
Jamal Coombs-McDaniel down to two schools: Over the weekend, Coombs-McDaniel visited Hofstra and reportedly had a great trip. In the coming weeks, he will be headed to Missouri, where he will choose between the two schools. Coombs-McDaniel had a couple of big games with the Huskies this season, but struggled to find consistent minutes with the Huskies, averaging just 6.6 ppg this season. He was arrested during UConn's spring weekend for possession of marijuana. It should be noted that Hofstra recently hired Pat Sellers, the assistant that recruited Coombs-McDaniel to UConn.
Louisville redshirts?: The Cardinals, who already have enough players on their roster that two potential starters -- Chris Smith and Kyle Kuric -- will be walking on next season, may end up being forced to redshirt another potential starter. Rick Pitino told the Louisville Courier-Journal that Jared Swopshire and Rakeem Buckles, who both battled injuries last season, could end up being redshirted if they aren't 100% when the season starts.
"Maybe one of the two can be redshirted," Pitino said. "It's something we'll consider, depending on how they come back. We do have a young man who is very healthy in Chane Behanan, who is an impact freshman."
Swopshire missed the entire season -- without being redshirted -- due to a potentially career-threatening groin injury. Buckles broke his finger midway through the season, but was able to return only to tear his acl late in the year.
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Hoops Housekeeping: SDSU adds an athlete, VCU loses a big man, and two WCC stars headed to the midwest?
Dwayne Polee is headed back west.