In recent weeks we've talked about transfer players who might be transferring to Illinois for next season. Whether it's Seton Hall's Aaron Cosby, or one of the many junior college players that John Groce has been showing interest in. Of course, if you understand how scholarships work, at some point you've asked yourself a question.
Where exactly are we going to put these guys?
After all, there are five players from the current team we know won't be back next season: Brandon Paul, D.J. Richardson, Tyler Griffey, Sam McLaurin and Kevin Berardini. Of those five all are on scholarship save for Berardini, which means that the Illini only have four available scholarships.
Well, our 2013 class includes five players. Now, doing some quick math you realize that five is more than four. So we're already short a scholarship -- actually, I forgot, but as Ian pointed out in comments, we have an extra scholarship after Michael Orris followed Weber to Kansas State -- and now Groce is going after other players? Well what's going on here!?
Oh, you know.
Groce will give his players some time off to decompress. He'll hold individual meetings with each player and the annual team banquet is right around the corner.
Groce has said nothing on the topic, but it's my belief not every player will return.
Players like to play and it's pretty clear that there may not be roles for some who were recruited by the previous coaching staff.
Ibby Djimde played just 19 minutes this season and doesn't have a role. Mike Shaw was a good soldier this season but probably isn't the kind of "stretch 4" power forward Groce is looking for.
And Devin Langford is an elite athlete who does not appear to be a real good basketball player.
And while Tupper mentioning it is the first time I've seen it mentioned in the print media, the rumors of Shaw, Djimde and Langford leaving aren't exactly new, they've been swirling around for some time. It's only logical to come to these conclusions when those three players played 163 minutes between them. Langford is the only one to see time since all three picked up some garbage time minutes against Northwestern, playing 13 minutes against Ohio State in the regular season finale and picking up a minute against Indiana in the Big Ten Tournament.
So, yeah, you should probably expect at least two of those guys, if not all three, to leave before next season. It's obvious John Groce does.
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