Even after being dealt Ned Stark-style deathblows twice last season, its a good time for Cincinnati basketball. Much of that has to do with the recruiting success that Mick Cronin has had recently. Jarron Cumberland is the crown jewel of the 2016 class and his addition is one of the brightest highlights of the recent run.
The 6’5”, 215-pound shooting guard from Wilmington, Ohio signed with the program all the way back in November and the hype has just built from there. During his senior year at Wilmington High School, Cumberland put up the kind of stats that would make LeBron James turn away sheepishly. He tallied 29.6 points, 7.4 rebounds, 3.6 steals and 3.2 assists per game and shot an impressive 57.4 percent from the field.
Here, take a look at him use his considerable size to bully his way to the basket and drop bucket after bucket after bucket.
And then do it some more.
In one game last February, he dropped 52 points. That ain’t no typo, Jack. That was 52. Are we sure UC is ready for a player with that kind of offensive chops? I mean 52 points is a normal score for the Bearcats to get in the annual rock fights with UConn.
In all seriousness, after years of defensive dominance, its clear Cronin has been reading the tea leaves and knows that he needs to start putting scorers on the roster. The addition of Trevor Moore and Keith Williams for the 2017 class has continued that trend which you could say began with Jacob Evans. Perhaps he isn’t the start, but Cumberland is the certainly the centerpiece of that strategy.
Cumberland was ranked the No. 55 recruit in the country by 247Sports and was in the same position on the ESPN 100. He also was ranked the No. 8 shooting guard in the country and the No. 4 prospect out of Ohio. Along with UC, he got offers and interest from a number of big-time programs such as Iowa State, Purdue, West Virginia and even Xavier, which means he’s already kind of dabbled in the Crosstown Shootout.
I fully expect Cumberland to make an immediate impact with the Bearcats. Evans and Justin Jenifer were both thrown into the fire immediately, so Cronin has shown that he isn’t afraid to test newcomers, especially highly touted ones and Cumberland is as highly touted as they come.