Having already received commitments in its 2014 recruiting class from two junior college transfers, West Virginia received a third on Saturday. 6-foot-6 guard Billydee Williams, who played at South Plains College in Texas last season, committed to attend the Big 12 school during his visit.
Williams joins yards Tarik Phillip and Jaysean Paige as the junior college transfers who will join Bob Huggins’ program this summer, and the Mountaineers will add five new players in total. Guards Jevon Carter and Daxter Miles are the two freshmen joining the program.
As a sophomore Williams averaged 10.4 points and 5.5 rebounds per game on a team that finished the season with a 29-6 record. The Orlando native shot 43.8% from the field and 39.8% from beyond the arc last season, and he scored 20 points or more in five games.
West Virginia lost two members of its backcourt rotation at the end of the 2013-14 season when guards Eron Harris and Terry Henderson decided to transfer. The good news for the Mountaineers was that leading scorer Juwan Staten decided to return to Morgantown for his senior season. Staten posted averages of 18.1 points, 5.8 rebounds and 5.6 assists per game last season, earning first team All-Big 12 honors.
Staten will once again lead the way for West Virginia, which will look to return to the NCAA tournament after missing out in each of the last two seasons.
New Utah Valley head coach Mark Pope made quite an impression on fans at the team’s Midnight Madness celebration last night. That’s because Pope did a dance and lip sync routine with his four daughters that turned out to be pretty impressive.
The former BYU assistant looks to be the leader in the clubhouse for best coach dance so far this preseason. We’ll see if any other coaches pull out elaborate routines at madness celebrations the next few weeks.
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.