Monday marked the start of the NBA free-agency period, setting off a frenzy of meetings, phone calls and rumors as teams look to build toward playoff or championship contention.
As for the high school recruiting process, that almost never stops. With players looking to land a major college scholarship offer, the summer typically brings a handful of transfers hoping to better position themselves for exposure against high-level competition. Here’s a look at a few impact players who will don a new uniform come next basketball season:
Sophomore PG Anthony Cowan
Old school: Good Counsel
New school: St. John’s
The rich get richer as St. John’s adds another talented guard to its wealth of skilled perimeter players. As one of five players to transfer from Good Counsel, Cowan garnered interest from Maryland as a freshman with his ability to facilitate, slash and score from the point guard position. Cowan’s jump shot will likely get better with time, which should boost his production from the 8.8 points he averaged while earning All-WCAC third-team honors last season. With Cowan joining senior guard and Georgetown commit Tre Campbell as well as guards Darian Anderson, Darian Bryant and James Palmer, think of St. John’s as the high school version of the Golden State Warriors: small ball with three-point efficiency.
“Even though we have guards, Anthony allows us to do some things in terms of giving us some depth because of how talented he is,” Cadets Coach Sean McAloon said. “There’s no pressure on him, but we do expect to have him play a role in what we’re doing.”
Sophomore guard Curt Jones
Old school: Highland Springs
New school: Paul VI
With six Division I prospects returning from last year’s team, Paul VI adds another one in Jones, who holds offers from N.C. State and Virginia Tech. Jones averaged a team-high 18.2 points at Highland Springs as a freshman last year, showcasing athleticism, a strong jump shot and solid court vision. His arrival will allow Paul VI to break out its aggressive fullcourt press more often and open up the inside for forwards Marcus Derrickson and Quadree Smith to go to work.
“We press and run a lot, so he’s a great addition to our squad and will complement his teammates well,” Panthers Coach Glenn Farello said. “When you look at successful college programs like VCU and Louisville, you see that you need talent and depth to win and that’s what we have.”
Sophomore guard Michael Janowski
Old school: Potomac Falls
New school: St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes
After putting together a strong freshman campaign, Janowski will join a St. Stephen’s/St. Agnes team that will surely contend in the IAC next season. At 6-1, 170 pounds, Janowski has the build to aggressively attack the rim as well as a soft-enough touch that opponents can’t give him too much room on the perimeter. Led by Cameron Gregory and Gavin Peppers, the Saints return their top five returning scorers, all of whom should mesh well with an unselfish playmaker like Janowski. Next year, the Saints, who also added junior forward and former Forest Park player Colin Goss, should have the depth and experience to avoid a late-season collapse.