USA TODAY Sports
UC gets important wins on and off the court
So by now, you all know the Bearcats toughed out another road Big East conference win at Seton Hall Saturday. Honestly, until my kids go away to college (in about 16 years) I won't be able to do many game recaps over the weekends. It's just too time-consuming plus just about every site does it, so for me it's just not worth the time to be redundant.
But, in case you were under a rock or slept through the game, then here goes an uber-quick recap: After (surprise!) another slow start for the Bearcats, they raced out of the second half gate to a 20-point lead then held on for dear life to beat Seton Hall in Newark, NJ to run their record to 18-4 and 6-3 in conference. Think about this: they are 10 points away from being 22-0. Well 14 if you consider the 10 points would have just tied each game, but you get the drift. They're not pretty, make no mistake about it. But, they defend like crazy and they can score just enough points to win 18 of 22 games. That's not too shabby.
OK let's put that one to bed because frankly I bet the team has as well. Providence on Wednesday may not scare you at 10-11, but they went to Villanova and knocked of the Wildcats Saturday and the Friars can score in bunches. UC is going to have to come ready to shoot and score a lot to pull this one out.
Now, the other - and perhaps more important - development over the weekend was Mick Cronin and Darren Savino got the #1 target they've been after for a few years now: Jermaine Lawrence. Several top recruiting sites have him ranked in the upper echelon of all players in the class of 2013. 247Sports has him #19 in their composite rankings of all players and #7 power forward, which is a bit deceptive since most analysts suggest he's not a typical "power forward". He's part of the new breed of big man who is much more comfortable with the ball in his hands. If you "YouTube" his game, you'll find a player who is very comfortable with the ball, can create his own shot, and (most importantly) make his shot as well.
It's no secret who UC's main competition was in this battle: the dreaded St. John's Red Storm and Steve Lavin, who appeared to have plucked Chris Obekpa from the Bearcats last year. Cronin and Savino were on Lawrence's tail from day one and made him feel like he was their #1 target all along. And he rewarded them by announcing he'd be attending UC and did so on Tumblr.com with a picture of his UC-themed birthday cake.
Now, here's the problem: UC currently has allotted one scholarship too many for next year and someone is going to have to go. There's been wide speculation as to whom that might be, but that's Mick's job not ours. I'm sure the plan has already been set in place. You can bet, however, Jermaine Lawrence is going to have a scholarship.
Quickly breaking down the 2013 UC recruiting class:
- Troy Caupain (PG) - says "SG", but was recruited as a point guard (signed)
- Kevin Johnson (SG) - (signed)
- Deshaun Morman (SG) - (not signed)
- Jermaine Lawrence (PF/SF) - (committed Sunday - not signed)
- Jamaree Strickland (C) - (signed)