Clemson will have an uphill battle this season in the ACC with no seniors and a very young team and the Tigers were dealt a blow over the weekend as the team announced that freshman guard Patrick Rooks would miss the entire 2013-14 season with a hip injury.
According to a release from the team, the 6’2″, 185-pound Rooks injured the hip in preseason and will undergo season-ending surgery.
“This is an unfortunate situation for Patrick,” Clemson head coach Brad Brownell said in the release. “He is a three-point specialist who shot the ball very well in Italy. Fortunately for us, we do have great depth in the backcourt. It’s a unique injury, something I haven’t seen in 20 years of coaching. I know our doctors and athletic trainer will do everything in their power to get him healthy. We look forward to having Patrick ready to go next season.”
A lefty shooter, Rooks averaged 17 points per game in his senior season at Charlotte Christian School in Charlotte, North Carolina and was regarded as a three-star prospect according to Rivals.
As Brownell pointed out, Clemson does have some depth returning in the backcourt with junior starting point guard Rod Hall and sophomore Jordan Roper returning. Junior Demarcus Harrison also started last season and will be one of the team’s better perimeter defenders and sophomore Adonis Filer can play a bit of both guard spots off the bench.
This is Clemson’s first season without a senior on the roster since 1995-96 and with the ACC as loaded as ever, they will need a lot of contributions from young and inexperienced players to compete in the conference.
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.