Tuesday, August 02, 2011

Basketball: Carleton gets (even more) stacked

Bad news, CIS hoopsters. That Carleton Ravens team that just won the CIS championship and is keeping almost all of their core roster together going forward? It's not going to get worse any time soon.

This isn't about the Ravens adding local standout recruit Justin Shaver, as they did last winter. This isn't even about the young duo of Tyson Hinz (Player of the Year) and Phil Scrubb (Rookie of the Year) getting better as they move into their upper years.

No, the news tonight is that former Brock standout Clinton Springer-Williams, who was CIS Rookie of the Year two seasons ago with Brock after averaging 21.2 points, has transferred to Carleton, according to recruiting guru Nolan Shulman.

CSW will have to sit out the year after playing for D-2 Gannon last year. He played just 136 minutes in 23 games last season, averaging just 1.9 points per game.

Still, despite his lowly numbers (and likely disagreements with the coaching staff), he's a dynamic, superathletic player that can create mismatches like few of his peers can.

It's tough to imagine what competition in the OUA East (and indeed, across the CIS) will be like against a team that will have a fourth-year Hinz, a third-year Scrubb, a second-year Shaver and Springer-Williams coming into the fold. That's a lot of talent for one lineup.

The Ravens have also added 6-foot-11 transfer Ben Felix from D-1 Northeastern.

Of course, it's not like the Ravens are just adding CSW to their current championship team. Key cogs like Elliot Thompson, Willy Manigat, Cole Hobin and Mike Kenny will have graduated by then, and who knows how Springer-Williams will fit in in Dave Smart's coaching environment.

But then again, it's not exactly like Smart has had problems a) getting talent to buy into a system, and b) finding pieces to fill out a roster.

We'll have to wait a little bit to see how this experiment turns out. But for the time being, a clear message has been sent to the rest of CIS that if they want to compete with Carleton, they'll have to get a whole lot better.

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