Florida State 7-foot center Kiel Turpin was granted a sixth year of eligibility by the NCAA, the university announced on Wednesday afternoon.
“I am very thankful for the NCAA allowing me to return for my sixth year of eligibility,” Turpin in a statement. “I also want to express my appreciation to Coach Hamilton and his staff and the administration at Florida State for working so hard to give me the opportunity to finish my career on the basketball court rather than on the sideline. I am going to work harder than I ever have to prepare myself physically to continue to be a productive member of our team. We are all very excited about the upcoming season. I am excited to join my teammates on the court during pre-season workouts, practice throughout the year and when we start playing games in November. It is a great feeling knowing that I will be able to represent the great fans of Florida State for one more season on the basketball court.”
“We are very happy for Kiel,” Florida State head coach Leonard Hamilton added.. “He will complete his basketball career and finish the requirements for a second degree in international affairs from Florida State after earning his undergraduate degree in social science last December.”
A leg injury sidelined Turpin for all of last year. He had previously received a medical redshirt for the the 2011-2012 season. The return of Turpin provides added depth on the Seminoles frontline. Rising junior centers Boris Bojanovsky and Michael Ojo, who stand 7-foot-3 and 7-foot-1, respectively, combined to play more than 32 minutes per game.
During the 2012-2013 season, Turpin averaged 5.4 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.3 blocks in 15.4 minutes per game.
Florida State finished seventh in the ACC, reaching the NIT semifinals.
Not only is Wyoming senior guard Josh Adams the lone returning starter from a team that won the Mountain West tournament last season, but he’s also one of college basketball’s best dunkers. And if anyone may have forgotten about his jumping ability, Adams put it on display Saturday during the Cowboys’ win over Montana State.
After splitting two Montana State players at the top of the key Adams attacked the basket, dunking with two hands over a late-arriving help-side defender. If you’re going to rotate over, have to do it quicker than that.
Video credit: Wyoming Athletics
Even with the coaching change from Fred Hoiberg to Steve Prohm, No. 4 Iowa State remains one of the nation’s best offensive teams. Given their skills on that end of the floor many teams find it tough to go score for score with the Cyclones, and that’s what happened to Illinois in Iowa State’s 84-73 win in the Emerald Coast Classic title game.
Georges Niang scored 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds, with Monté Morris adding 20, nine rebounds and six assists and Abdel Nader 18 points as the Cyclones moved to 5-0 on the season. The three-pointers weren’t falling in the second half, as Iowa State shot 0-f0r-12, but they shot 19-for-24 inside of the arc to pull away from a team that lost big man Mike Thorne Jr. late in the first half to a left knee injury.
Illinois’ loss of size in the paint opened things up offensively for Iowa State, and the Cyclones took advantage. But where this group grabbed control of the game was on the defensive end of the floor, and that will be the key for a team with Big 12 and national title aspirations.
Nader took on the responsibility of defending Illinois’ Malcolm Hill (20 points) in the second half and did a solid job of keeping the junior wing in check, with that serving as the spark to a 12-2 run that put the game away. There’s no denying that the Cyclones can put points on the board; most of the talent from last season is back and the productivity on that end of the floor hasn’t changed as a result. Niang’s one of the nation’s best forwards, and both Morris (who now ranks among the country’s best point guards) and Nader have taken significant strides in their respective games.
Iowa State will add Deonte Burton in December, giving them another option to call upon. Front court depth is a bit of a concern, as Iowa State can ill afford to lose a Niang or Jameel McKay, but there’s enough on the roster to compensate for that and force mismatches in other areas.
But the biggest question for this group is how effective they can become at stringing together stops. Illinois certainly had its moments in both halves Saturday night, but Iowa State also showed during the game’s decisive stretch that they can step up defensively. The key now is to do so consistently, and if that occurs the Cyclones can be a threat both within the Big 12 and nationally.