The 2019-2020 season was Saint Joe’s worst season in the school’s history. The team had holes at almost every position on the court. While standout junior Ryan Daly did his best to fill those gaps, there was only so much he could do as one person. I also would be remiss to not mention the crucial efforts from Cameron Brown and Rahmir Moore all season long. But, all SJU fans can agree there was much room for improvement.
Luckily, SJU has a few new players that will be on Hawk Hill if the NCAA approves of a 2020-2021 season. All credit to Billy Lange, he hasn’t let last year’s unfavorable season hurt SJU’s recruiting abilities. Both the eligible transfers and new recruits should elevate Saint Joe’s out of the bottom of the Atlantic 10.
Greg Foster JR.
Greg Foster JR announced that he was transferring from Gonzaga to SJU back in June of 2019. After sitting out the entire 2019-2020 season, Foster will have three years of eligibility available to use at Saint Joe’s.
While at Gonzaga, Foster had extremely limited playing time. The Wisconsin native averaged only four minutes a game for the Zags. In the end, this was the main reason Foster transferred from Gonzaga to Saint Joe’s.
While Foster does lack sufficient in-game experience reps at the Division 1 level, Greg Foster Jr is still a player that should excite Hawks fans. As a four-star recruit (per ESPN), the 6’5 Foster showed much promise as a point guard. Even in his one year at Gonzaga, he was able to showcase his court vision. Forster’s best game at Gonzaga was arguably against North Dakota State, where he had 5 assist in 20 minutes.
If Greg Foster receives proper minutes, unlike the ones averaged at Gonzaga, his talent will allow him can easily exceed his Gonzaga averages. Foster’s ability to be the primary ball handler will alleviate the load Ryan Daly carried as SJU primary ball handler. If Daly does return to SJU, Greg Foster’s role at guard will provide Daly with more opportunities to roam freely as an off-ball scorer.
Dahmir Bishop, another four-star recruit, transferred to Saint Joe’s this past semester. After decreasing minutes at Xavier, the Philadelphia native decided to come back to his hometown this past January. Bishop began classes this past spring and will become eligible after he completes his fall 2020 semester.
Bishop played a total of 5 games for the Musketeers. His best game came against Lipscomb where the freshmen tallied three rebounds, four assists, and two steals. As the second 6’5 guard transfer to SJU, Bishop should plug nicely into Billy Lange’s position less roster.
Bishop’s highlight videos showcase his impressive athletic ability. His athletic explosion can help him to grow into an excellent finisher in the lane. Bishop also should be able to leverage his athletic ability on the defensive end. His quickness can make intercepting passing lanes very easy. This type of athleticism will be the kick start for Coach Lange’s transition oriented offense in 2020-2021.
Jordan Hall signed with Saint Joe’s back in June of 2019. Hall’s commitment to SJU has been thoroughly covered in Philadelphia media thanks to Hall’s attendance at Neuman Goretti, a local Highschool. Hall measures at an impressive 6’7 and should step easily into the Small Forward position. When watching his highlight tapes, he seemed to have a well-rounded skill set. He can score, rebound, and pass very well. His shooting form looks fundamentally sound as well.
The 2019-2020 season at SJU was all about pace and space. Luckily, Hall demonstrates the ability to execute a clean outlet pass. This fits nicely into Lange’s system. Hall should be able to zip the ball up the court and jump-start Lange’s high tempo scoring. A player of this size with a full-court vision makes for a combination that could make Hall a pivotal asset in Lange’s rotation.
Hall’s tape was the most compelling in comparison to the other recruits. Adding size to the small SJU roster is one of the most important needs Lange needed to address. Hall has all the intangibles. He can make passes in both the full and half court. He has the size the be an effective rebounder. Furthermore, he can score from both inside the paint and out on the perimeter. Expect Hall to be making plays all around the court this November.
Jardian Tracy is a 6’5 SF recruit from West Oaks Academy. A native of Orlando, Tracey played his senior year of basketball on a team with six division one recruits. In the limited online highlight tapes, Tracey appears to be more comfortable in a hybrid guard position. At 6’5 it makes sense that he would be listed as a small forward wing. However, in Division 1 NCAA basketball he has the size of a shooting guard.
Anticipate Tracey to come off the bench in Lange’s rotation. This is a player who should have an increased impact as the season progresses. His size and skill set will fit nicely in Lange’s wing oriented offense.
Anton Jansson brings the size that Saint Joe’s desperately needs. The 2019-2020 season showed how slim the center position was for the Hawks. With the injury of Anthony Longpre and Taylor Funk, Lange found himself with the smallest frontcourt in the NCAA. Additionally, anyone who watched SJU play last year knew that the team had a rim protection problem.
Jansson should provide much need rebounding and rim protection for Saint Joe’s. While he may have a way to go before starting, this 6’10 center should plug nicely in when needed. While rebounding does require skill, sometimes good rebounding just comes down to the size of your players.
A-10 twitter has been circulating a lot of pre-season power rankings this spring. Many have Saint Joe’s improving minimally next season. However, the additions Lange has made are beginning to fill the roster with players who fit his scheme. This should help SJU surpass the predictions.
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