Minnesota’s lack of point guard depth was on full display on Sunday, and it may be enough of a concern that Tubby Smith will recruit another point guard for the upcoming season. Devoe Joseph is a shooting guard who will need to develop in a point guard. Lawrence Westbrook has a long way to go until he can run an offense. Next season, Minnesota’s only point guards will be Al Nolen and a probably not very improved Kevin Payton. Unless Westbrook learns to calm down or Blake Hoffarber gets some foot speed, next year could be particularly frustrating. Royce White and Rodney Williams are talented, but talent doesn’t matter if its at the wrong position.

Two names have surfaced, or resurfaced in recent days as targets for the Gophers. While they may decide to hold both remaining scholarships for 2009, if they use one of them,  these are the two most likely recruits.

Verdell Jones (#12 in white) is the #2 uncomitted point guard in the country.


Another name being thrown around, perhaps less legitimately, is Malcom Armstead. He is putting up great numbers (31 ppg 11 assists) but right now both his skill level and the Gophers’ interst is still a bit of a mystery. More here.

10 thoughts on “Recruiting a point guard is now a necessity

  1. So we for sure have 2 scholarships left? I was trying to figure out how many we still had because we only have 3 seniors leaving. If we need another big, Krys Faber out of california is very interested in us and almost signed during the early signing period.

  2. We are currently out of scholarships next year. Travis Busch and Jamal Abu-Shamala are both on one year renewable scholarships. Conceivably, they could have their athletic scholarships converted to academic scholarships or they could return to walk on status (which they both had originally).

    For the ’09-’10 season we will have two scholarships available assuming no one leaves before their 4 years are through. Right now, we are targeting Rodney Williams and Royce White, two slashing wing players, who seem to be the same type of player. To me, it would seem to make a lot more sense to choose either Williams or White, and pick up a point guard with that other scholarship.

    Faber shoots free throws worse than Jonathan Williams, which is a bit troubling. And, considering that we are already bringing in some good size next year, I think a point guard is a bigger need than another big right now.

    Of course, if the Jamal or Busch scholarships stay the same, no one will be added to this class, and we’ll just have to hope Devoe can be the point guard he thinks he is.

  3. As far as next year’s recruits go, I saw on scout.com that we are in the running for 5-star center DaShante Riley out of Michigan…although I don’t know serious his interest is going to be with the opportunity to play for Izzo in his home state…

  4. Minnesota deciding whether or not to take a 1 and done player. That’s a new predicament to have.

  5. So our 13 scholarship players for next year are going to be:
    Nolen, Hoffharber, Westbrook, Johnson, Payton, Busch, Williams, Abu-Shamala


    Joseph, Sampson III, Carter, Bostick, and Iverson?

    How are we supposed to get Verdell Jones or Armstead for next year (according to the article)if we have our maximum of 13 schoarship players already?

  6. Busch or Payton would need to have their scholarship status changed to academic instead of athletic. If the reports about players’ GPAS’s are accurate, several Gophers would be eligible for academic scholarships.

  7. Busch or Abu-Shamala I meant, but Payton, if his grades are good enough, could also get an academic scholarship.

  8. i have played b-ball with and against malcolm armstead alot one thing about him staying in front of him is not an option lightning quick

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