Creighton fans got some great news late last week as two-time first-team All-American Doug McDermott announced that he will be returning to school for his senior season.
But he may not be the only Bluejay thought to be gone that could end up getting an extra season in Omaha.
Grant Gibbs was a fifth-year senior for Creighton last season, but he has only played three seasons during his five-year career. As a freshman at Gonzaga, he redshirted but would not have been able to play due to a shoulder injury. After playing as a redshirt freshman with the Zags, Gibbs transferred to Creighton. He redshirted once again while sitting out, but knee surgery would have kept him out for the year even if NCAA rules had allowed him to play.
An athlete has five years to use up his four seasons of eligibility, and the clock begins when the athlete enrolls in college. By the letter of the law, Gibbs’ career should be done.
But as it turns out, he may actually have a case strong enough to get himself a sixth season. From the Omaha World-Herald:
Gibbs said his paperwork was submitted to [a law firm that specializes in dealing with NCAA issues] on Monday and Creighton was told it would likely receive an answer “sooner than later.”
“They indicated we should have an answer any day now,” Gibbs said. “If they indicate it would be worth pursuing, I would sit down with Coach Mac (Greg McDermott) and Ras (Athletic Director Bruce Rasmussen) and discuss it.
“If it’s something they would want to pursue, I’d be more than willing.”
Gibbs is a valuable piece for the Bluejays. He’s an excellent distributor that can create off of the wing and in the pick-and-roll. His playmaking allows guys like Jahenns Manigat and Austin Chatman a chance to space the floor and get clean looks from the perimeter.
And his return should help take some pressure off of McDermott as Creighton makes their foray into the new Big East.
You can find Rob on twitter @RobDauster.