This weekend has proven to be a productive one for Baylor on the recruiting front, as they’ve now landed two verbal commitments. One day after 2017 four-star power forward Tristan Clark announced that he’ll play for Scott Drew while on an unofficial visit to the Big 12 program, 6-foot-9 Indian Hills CC forward Nuni Omot did the same while on his official visit.
Omot is Baylor’s second commitment in the Class of 2016, joining four-star small forward Mark Vital. This will be Omot’s first season at Indian Hills after spending his first two years of college at Division II Concordia University in St.Paul, Minnesota.
After redshirting as a freshman in 2013-14 Omot averaged 12.5 points and 5.5 rebounds per game last season. With Baylor losing the versatile Taurean Waller-Prince and one of the nation’s top rebounders in Rico Gathers Sr. from their front court at the end of the 2015-16 season, adding another piece is a positive for the Bears moving forward.
With returnees such as seniors Taurean Waller-Prince and Rico Gathers Sr., Baylor will begin the 2015-16 season with one of the nation’s top front courts. However, head coach Scott Drew will have to work with one less option, as it was reported by the Waco Tribune that junior forward Jo Acuil will miss at least the next eight weeks of action.
During this time Acuil will undergo testing for a possible heart ailment, which leaves Baylor without a junior college transfer who was expected to help out in regards to both the depth and skill of the front court. The 7-footer from the Sudan averaged 20.1 points, 11.2 rebounds and 4.7 blocks per game as a sophomore at Neosho Community College.
“Jo’s health is of first and foremost importance,” Baylor coach Scott Drew said. “He had really improved this summer and fall, not only on the court but also in the weight room. He had progressed nicely.”
With Acuil sidelined Baylor’s tallest available player is redshirt sophomore Johnathan Motley, who’s only 6-foot-9. Motley was productive in his first season on the court, starting all 34 games and averaging 7.7 points, 4.2 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in 21.5 minutes of play per game.
Wednesday afternoon the Baylor basketball program sent out some images of its uniform combinations for the upcoming season, and the volt color way that first made a splash in 2012 is back. Baylor’s got four different uniforms it can wear this season: home (white), away (green) and two alternate uniforms.
While there is some volt green in each of the four uniforms, its presence is relatively tame compared to the uniforms Scott Drew’s program wore back in 2012. Of course those uniforms were part of adidas’ AdiZero uniform release (Baylor is now outfitted by Nike), with two other schools (Cincinnati and Louisville) wearing colorful uniforms with shorts that had “interesting” patterns on them.
While some of the new uniform designs in college sports have received some pushback from fans and alums, this stuff is about the players and recruits programs look to land for the future. Everyone likes free stuff, and when it comes to apparel for young athletes having something that’s both free and “exclusive” is seen as a positive.