Tag: Cole Huff

Greg McDermott
Associated Press

Creighton hoping transfers Watson, Huff can spark turnaround

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OMAHA, Neb. (AP) Even though Maurice Watson Jr. is yet to play his first game as Creighton’s new point guard, he doesn’t lack confidence.

Watson made that clear Wednesday at the Bluejays’ media day when he was asked to describe his playing style.

He said he’s a pass-first point guard who’ll keep his teammates happy. He was only warming up.

“I know the type of game we play with the 3-point shooters we have, teams are going to be forced to play me one-on-one, and I don’t think there is anybody who can guard me one-on-one, who can stop me from getting to the basket,” Watson said. “With my improved jump shot, I think I’ll be more efficient, and I’ll be knocking down way more jump shots. I do think I’ll be aggressive, mainly toward the middle to the end of games when it’s that time to take over.”

Coach Greg McDermott said he has no qualms with Watson’s strong sense of self.

“Sooner or later you’re going to have to back it up,” he said. “As long as he puts in the work to back up what he says, I can live with some of that.”

Watson and fellow transfer Cole Huff will need to play major roles if the Bluejays are going to bounce back from their first losing season since 1995-96. Creighton, which lost eight games in the final minute, was 14-19 and tied for ninth in the Big East at 4-14. The Bluejays were picked to finish ninth again in the Big East’s preseason coaches’ poll.

Forward Toby Hegner (6.7 ppg) is the only returning starter, guard James Milliken (9.6 ppg) played significant minutes and Geoffrey Groselle (5.4 ppg, 2.5 rpg) and Zach Hanson (3.8 ppg, 2.4 rpg) split time at center. Guard Isaiah Zierden (9.5 ppg), who shot nearly 40 percent on 3-pointers, is back after a knee injury ended his season in January.

Watson, who transferred from Boston University, takes over at the point for three-year starter Austin Chatman. Watson averaged 13.3 points, 7.1 assists and 2.1 steals while leading the Terriers to the NIT in 2013-14. Forward Cole Huff, who transferred from Nevada, averaged 12.4 points and 5.4 rebounds for the Wolf Pack.

“We’re more experienced than a lot of teams simply because Maurice and Cole played meaningful basketball and have been good players at their respective schools they transferred from,” McDermott said. “When you add two guys to the lineup that have played as many games as they’ve played, you probably aren’t getting a true reading of exactly what your returning experience is.”

Milliken said he’s excited to play with Watson and likes his cocksure demeanor.

What about Watson’s claim that he’s unstoppable one on one?

“Honestly, he’s tough,” Milliken said. “He’s really quick in changing directions. He’ll find a way to get around you, and he doesn’t miss layups. He might be accurate with that one.”

Creighton gets 2015 commitment from center Justin Patton

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Creighton received a verbal commitment from Justin Patton, a 6-foot-10 2015 center from Omaha North High (Nebraska). This was first reported by Nebraska High School Hoops on Tuesday evening, followed by multiple reports that confirmed the commitment.

“I really worked on my game since last summer,” Patton told Nebraska High School Hoops. “I am excited about the opportunity to play at Creighton. It gives me a chance to play in front of my family at the highest level. My goal is to play at the highest level I possibly can, and Creighton allows me to do that.”

In its first year as a member of the Big East, Creighton finished second in the conference standings. Despite making a third straight NCAA tournament, the Bluejays failed to get past the first weekend. Without National Player of the Year Doug McDermott, and three other starters, Creighton will likely take a step back this upcoming season.

Patton is technically the first commit in Creighton’s 2015 recruiting class. However, head coach Greg McDermott has been active this spring, putting pieces together for the 2015-2016 season. Point guard Mo Watson Jr. (Boston University) and power forward Cole Huff (Nevada) have both transferred into the program and will be eligible after sitting out next season, due to NCAA transfer rules.

As a junior, Patton averaged 11.8 points and 7.9 rebounds.

Former Nevada forward Cole Huff transfers to Creighton

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Nevada transfer forward Cole Huff decided to continue his college career at Creighton. Huff announced his decision via Twitter on Sunday evening following his visit to Iowa, the other finalist for his services.

Clint Parks, Huff’s former AAU coach, told Scott Dochterman of The Gazette, that the 6-foot-8 forward was down to Iowa and Creighton. An announcement was expected shortly after his trip to Iowa City. That was the last stop on his visits. He spent the previous weekend in Omaha.

Huff was also being pursued by Michigan and Dayton.

Huff averaged 12.4 points and 5.4 rebounds per game in a breakout sophomore campaign. He left the program in early April, however it took several weeks for the two sides to comprise on his transfer restrictions. Huff is free to explore Pac-12 and West Coast programs located in Southern California, though, he is destined to become a member of the Bluejays, resuming his career at the start of the 2015-2016 season.

He becomes the second big-time transfer Greg McDermott has been able to land in the last three weeks. On April 13, former Boston University point guard Maurice Watson committed to Creighton. The duo will provide quality competition during practice as they both sit out the 2014-2015 season due to NCAA transfer rules.

Huff made a noticeable jump from his freshman to sophomore season, and the additional year will give him time to continue to build on his 205-pound frame.

“He needs to develop strength,” Parks told The Gazette. “He needs to develop his body and get better in the weight room during his redshirt year.”

CBT listed Huff as the sixth best available transfer.