Xavier (literally) got some big help in the frontcourt on Monday afternoon, as 6-9, 290-pound Western Michigan transfer Matt Stainbrook tweeted that he would be headed to play for Chris Mack.
He chose Xavier over Wright State and Bradley.
“After visiting, it was basically the academics, the athletics and the success they’ve had in the past,” Stainbrook told MLive.com of Xavier. “All of those schools are great schools. It came down to needing to have all three of those things.”
In his sophomore season, Stainbrook averaged 11.4 points and 6.8 rebounds per game, shooting 58% from the field for the Broncos.
“I’m looking at it as a fresh start,” he said. “It’s a clean slate for everything. I’m going to try to make the most of that.”
Seven-foot center Kenny Frease is graduating this year so, after sitting out a season, per NCAA rules, Stainbrook could help with that vacancy in the frontcourt.
Xavier finished 23-13 on the year, including 10-6 in the Atlantic 10. The Musketeers lost to Baylor in the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament.
Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_
UConn commit Juwan Durham, a four-star big man in the Class of 2016, has torn the ACL in his right knee for the second time in seven months. The Florida native committed to the Huskies and head coach Kevin Ollie back in September. The 6-foot-9 forward is regarded as the No. 31 overall prospect in the national Class of 2016, so he can really be a force when he’s healthy.
In a report from Tampabay.com’s Bob Putnam, UConn was notified of the injury immediately and there is no change in plans with the commitment. The Huskies also own commitments from four-star point guard Alterique Gilbert and three-star power forward Mamadou Diarra in the Class of 2016. Having Diarra, an active, rim-protecting presence, helps with Durham’s recovery, since he can provide some more front court depth.
If Durham rehabs back to full speed, UConn has a very talented power forward who was just hitting his stride in the Florida state playoffs last February. UConn has a nice class so far with this group, especially if Durham can recover, With a year to recover until next season, Durham can hopefully play during his freshman season in 2016.
Arizona State fans won’t get a chance to see Torian Graham take the floor this season, but he did sky over fellow teammates (and transfer) Shannon Evans on Friday night at the team’s Maroon and Gold Madness. The 6-foot-4 Graham is a former Buffalo commit — Evans also came from Buffalo — and both players will have to sit out the 2015-16 season due to NCAA transfer regulations.
Graham hasn’t had a chance to get into a Division I game, but he’ll be able to play for the Sun Devils next season. For now, fans can look forward to Graham’s athleticism on the wing in pregame dunk routines.
A former top-100 prospect, Graham also pulled off this ridiculous move in the dunk contest.