UNC Wilmington picked up a key transfer on Friday evening as new head coach Kevin Keatts and the Seahawks landed former Charlotte guard Denzel Ingram.
The news was first reported by Rick Lewis of Phenom Hoops Report.
Ingram averaged at least 24 minutes a game in his two seasons at Charlotte and the 6-foot guard improved his shooting percentages significantly as a sophomore.
During the 2013-14 season, Ingram averaged 8.1 points, 2.1 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game for the 49ers while shooting 43 percent from the field and 44 percent from three-point range.
As a freshman, Ingram only shot 37 percent from the field and 27 percent from three-point territory.
As the new head coach at UNC-Wilmington, Keatts has done a nice job of rebuilding the program’s backcourt depth in a matter of months. Keatts added 2014 point guard commitments from Malik Pugh and Jordan Talley and also added Jacksonville transfer Jarvis Haywood this offseason.
Haywood and Ingram will both sit out the 2014-15 season due to NCAA transfer rules, but both should have a big impact on the program when they’re available the following season.
During the past two seasons, Charlotte’s coach Alan Major has significantly cut down the amount of three-point attempts his squad takes. The team’s three-point rate ranked among the lowest in DI in 2013 and 2014, and though the 49ers don’t take many long-range shots, they did make quite a few this season — Charlotte made 36 percent of their shots. According to a report from Jon Rothstein, though, Charlotte will lose one of their top shooters to transfer: sophomore Denzel Ingram will transfer from the Conference USA program and have two years of eligibility remaining.
Ingram used more than 50 percent of the team’s minutes as a freshman, and while his usage rate remained essentially stagnant as a soph, he spent his offseason refining his three-point shot. Ingram increased his percentage to 44.1 percent, making nearly twenty more threes in his second year, and emerged as one of the team’s best scoring threats from the perimeter.
The 49ers should still be a threat in conference play in 2104-14; other than Ingram and departing senior Ben Cherry, Major shouldn’t lose any other players. The trio of Willie Clayton, Shawn Lester, and Pierria Henry should be able to offensively carry the team, but Ingram’s loss deprives Major of a complimentary scoring threat.