Bruce Pearl capped off an impressive month of August with yet another commitment.
On Sunday morning, 2015 guard New Williams from Santa Monica High (California) committed to the Tigers while on an official visit, according to Evan Daniels of Scout.com. Williams becomes the fifth player to commit to the program since Aug. 22.
The 6-foot-2 guard missed his junior season with a torn ACL. He had offers from Arizona State, New Mexico, Pepperdine, Tulsa, UNLV and UTEP, according to Daniels.
Williams is regarded as a four-star prospect by Rivals, giving Pearl his third four-star commitment in the Class of 2015. Danjel Purifoy, a 6-foot-6 small forward, became the first pledge on Aug. 22. Two days later, Pearl’s three-year show-cause penalty ended, and he quickly earned a commitment from power forward Horace Spencer, a top-60 overall recruit. A day later, three-star JuCo shooting guard T.J. Dunans picked Auburn. Pearl’s 2015 class will also include former Marshall guard Kareem Canty, who is sitting out this season per NCAA transfer rules. He averaged 16.3 points and 5.5 assists per game as a redshirt freshman this past season.
Former Maryland commit Trayvon Reed also committed to Auburn this week, though, he will join the team in the second semester.
The Big South is moving its 2016 men’s basketball tournament out of Coastal Carolina and a new site will be figured out by November. According to a release from the conference the Big South is using a league bylaw that stipulates that members leaving with less than two years of notice are not eligible to host championships. Coastal Carolina announced this summer that it would be leaving for the Sun Belt as of July 2016, so the Big South wants to find a new location that benefits teams staying in the league.
The Big South men’s and women’s conference tournaments are now also going to be split into two unique events, with the men’s championships being held Thursday-Sunday, March 3-6. The women’s event comes the next week from March 10-13. Bids for both events will come into the league and a new location will be selected in the next few months.
It will be interesting to see if the site of the conference tournament is moved to a campus site or placed at a neutral venue. That type of thing could alter how the NCAA tournament autobid gets played out. With Coastal Carolina coming off of back-to-back NCAA tournament appearances, this obviously changes their approach to the postseason now that they have to leave their city.
Virginia Tech is trying to decide what to do with injury sophomore guard Ahmed Hill, who had surgery this summer to deal with a tear in his patella tendon in his left knee.
The 6-foot-5 Hill has still not been released to work out with the team, but he is about a week to 10 days ahead of schedule in his rehab. But the injury is still nagging enough that Hill might not be healthy enough to really contritbute this season. Head coach Buzz Williams is deciding soon whether he wants to redshirt Hill or not.
Hill started a team-high 30 games for the Hokies last season, averaging 8.7 points and 3.7 rebounds per game.
“I don’t have a decision on (Hill),” Williams said to reporters on Monday. “I will make the final decision. I’ll let (him) and his mom be a part of it, but I want to make a decision using the wisdom of doing this for a long period of time. If you let a kid make the decision, they always want to play.
“Right now, I don’t feel comfortable that I would want to play him. It’s just too early to be able to have much more of an answer than that.”
It’s still a rebuilding year for Virginia Tech, but they do get Maryland transfer Seth Allen, who is a talented guard who can score. The Hokies were hoping to have Hill and Allen as complimentary perimeter scorers, but now the plans might have to be altered. Williams went on to say that he would like to make a decision on Hill’s status by Halloween.