George Washington v Notre Dame

George Washington guard Lasan Kromah transfers to UConn

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The Connecticut back court was already in good shape with the return of Shabazz Napier, Ryan Boatright and Omar Calhoun. On Tuesday afternoon, Kevin Ollie added to his guard depth with George Washington transfer Lasan Kromah.

This news came according to, who confirmed the transfer through a source.

Kromah is graduating from George Washington, which means he does not have to sit out a year and can use his last season of eligibility next season in Storrs. Ollie has already added N.C. State freshman guard Rodney Purvis earlier this offseason, although he will have to miss the entire 2013-2014 campaign per NCAA transfer rules.

Through his first two years at GW, Kromah played for current UConn assistant coach Karl Hobbs. Kromah averaged 10.1 points, 3.7 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game this past season. He missed the 2010-2011 season, giving him the extra year of eligibility.

The 6-foot-5 Kromah will join incoming-freshman guard Terrence Samuel (South Shore High/Brooklyn, N.Y.) as newcomers in the Husky back court. Power forward Kentan Facey (Long Island Lutheran High/Glen Head, N.Y.) and center Amida Brimah (Archbishop Carroll High/Miami, Fla.) round out the UConn incoming class.

For the second time through his first two seasons as a head coach, Ollie has landed a fifth-year senior guard. Last season, Ollie got Connecticut native R.J. Evans to use up his last year of eligibility at UConn, following his career at Holy Cross.

UConn won 20 games this past season, but was banned from the NCAA tournament. Heading into next season, the Huskies return Napier, Boatright, Calhoun and DeAndre Daniels — players to average double digits in points per game last season. Kromah scored in double figures in each of his three seasons with the Colonials.

Terrence is also the lead writer at and can be followed on Twitter: @terrence_payne

Syracuse receives mixed news on sanctions appeals

Jim Boeheim
Associated Press
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Wednesday the NCAA made its ruling on two appeals of sanctions made by Syracuse University, with the news being mixed for the men’s basketball program.

On the positive side the NCAA ruled that Syracuse will be docked two scholarships per season for the next four years, as opposed to the original ruling of three. As a result Jim Boeheim’s program only has to account for the loss of eight total scholarships, meaning that they’ll have 11 to fill in each of the next four seasons as opposed to ten.

One scholarship may not seem like a big deal, but in a sport where you only get 13 (when not dealing with sanctions) getting that grant-in-aid back really helps from a recruiting standpoint.

As for the negatives, they both concern Boeheim. Not only has there yet to be a ruling on Boeheim’s appeal of his nine-game suspension that goes into effect when ACC play begins in January (that appeal is being heard separately), but the appeal to reinstate the wins that were vacated as part of the sanctions was denied. As a result Boeheim officially has 868 wins instead of 969 (not counting today’s game against Charlotte).

And with Mike Hopkins set to take over as head coach in 2018, the denial means that college basketball will have to wait quite some time before anyone threatens to join Duke’s Mike Krzyzewski in the 1,000 wins club.

While not having the wins officially reinstated does hurt, getting a scholarship back for each of the next four seasons is a bigger deal when it comes to the long-term health of the Syracuse program. Also of great importance will be the ruling regarding Boeheim’s suspension, as a suspended coach is not allowed to have any contact with his players or coaching staff while serving the penalty.

And with the original ruling due to take up half of Syracuse’s league slate, not having Boeheim (or the chance to speak with him) is a big deal when it comes to this current team.

St. John’s forward Kassoum Yakwe cleared by NCAA

Chris Mullin
AP Photo/Rick Bowmer
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St. John’s forward Kassoum Yakwe has been cleared by the NCAA to play this season and will be eligible immediately, the school announced on Wednesday.

Yakwe is a 6-foot-8 forward that reclassified and enrolled at St. John’s this fall. He attended the same high school as Kansas forward Cheick Diallo, who was also cleared by the NCAA to play today.

St. John’s played in the Maui Invitational this week, and Yakwe did not take part. His first game with the Johnnies will be on Dec. 2nd against Fordham if the program plans to play his this season.

The question that must be asked, however, is whether or not he will suit up or simply redshirt. The Johnnies are in the midst of a serious rebuild and will be without their other elite recruit this season, Marcus Lovett. Lovett was ruled a partial qualifier. Would it make sense to burn a year of eligibility on what make amount to a wasted season, or will head coach Chris Mullin opt to save that year for down the road?