Since their loss to Florida in the first round of the NCAA tournament, Mark Schmidt and co. have been searching tirelessly to fill some, if not all, of the six open scholarships. Their were originally five open scholarships, but Izaiah Brockington’s departure, and the commitments of Kyle Lofton, Dom Welch, and Melkisedek Moreaux have left three potential scholarships remaining for this upcoming year. Schmidt has been a fan of keeping at least one in his back pocket, so there is a high likelihood he only signs one or two more players. The 6-10 former La Salle commit Osun Osunniyi would fit perfectly in the Bonnies system.
Osun is a Perfect Match for the Bonnies Because…
The Frontcourt is Incredibly Thin
This was already apparent last season, but the Bonnies have still not signed a player over 6-6 for the 2018-19 season. It wasn’t a huge issue last season, since they often played small with LaDarrien Griffin playing the 5. However, with Josh Ayeni hurt and Amadi Ikpeze in consistent foul trouble, more often they had to play with the small lineup out of necessity than choice. Adding another center would let Schmidt have the option of going big or small when necessary.
No Centers in the Past Two Recruiting Classes
Amadi Ikpeze is the last four year center to sign with the Bonnies. If they don’t get one in this class, they will have gone dangerously long without bringing in a young center, and may be forced to develop a big man more quickly than Schmidt is accustomed to. Brining in Osunniyi will continue the steady stream of big men through the Enchanted Mountains.
His Upside is Exciting
In its end of the season recap, the New England Recruiting Report said, “As far as ceiling is concerned, Osunniyi may own one of the highest in the 2018 class.” Only a year ago, Osun was gathering minimal interest from DI schools. Now, after his breakout in the National Prep Championship game, he’s garnering interest from Power 5’s, and his game figures to only improve from here. Osun could easily turn into another recruit that leaves commentators and other A-10 teams wondering how the Bonnies got such a steal.
The Bonnies are a Perfect Match for Osun Because…
Mark Schmidt has a History of Developing Big Men
David West. Andrew Nicholson. Youssou Ndoye. All players with varying skills as freshman that developed substantially and went on to pursue professional careers. Schmidt clearly has a knack for developing big men, and Osun could be the next in a storied line of centers to be molded by him.
He’ll Play Right Away
After losing their three seniors and Izaiah Brockington, there are 3673 minutes to replace this upcoming season. Combine the abundance of available time with the lack of big men ahead of him, and Osun would almost certainly get quality minutes in his freshman season.
One Putnam Science Alum is Already Here
Kyle Lofton, Osun’s teammate on the National Prep Champion Putnam Science Academy team, committed to Bona in early March. Having a familiar face around could make the transition to college easier and more enjoyable. And, just imagine four years of the Putnam Science connection that took the world by storm tearing up the Riley Center.
Osun has also gathered interest from Maryland, Georgetown, and Syracuse (who he visits later this week). Whether or not he decides to embark on the good journey is up in the air, but there is no question that Osun would fit perfectly into Mark Schmidt’s system and have an immediate impact on the Bonnies attempt to build upon their recent success.