Monday, April 19, 2010

Curious transfer at Delaware

We've been expecting some roster moves at Delaware, where Tina Martin's task is to find enough supplementary talent to complement All-American Elena Delle Donne. But we weren't expecting the exodus of junior Tesia Harris, who the school announced last week will transfer.

The move is curious on several fronts. Rarely do juniors with just one year of eligibility remaining transfer, particularly if no coaching change is involved. Playing time wasn't an issue - Harris has been an unquestioned starter the past two years. And Harris appeared to be thriving as a player at Delaware. She averaged 12.2 ppg last season - second among Blue Hens to Delle Donne - and two years ago was a third-team All-CAA pick.

We're not in the speculation business when it comes to why players come and go, and all Martin is offering is the perfunctory "We wish Tesia well." But the News-Journal's Kevin Tresolini, who's has stayed on top of Blue Hens sports for years, suggests the move may have something to do with wanting to be closer to home, and that St. John's is a likely destination.

Obviously we hope things work out well for Harris. As for Delaware, while this hardly qualifies as good news, Harris' departure shouldn't cripple the Blue Hens going forward. Delaware needs players capable of capitalizing on the extra attention Delle Donne demands. Like most of last year's Blue Hens, Harris (a 35.7 percent shooter) struggled in this regard.

So far, Delaware has just one incoming recruit, center Kelsey Buchanan, the Virginia Division 4 Player of the Year from two-time state champion Freedom High. The Blue Hens also appear to be in play for at least one other hotshot. Anna Kestler, a point guard from Pittsburgh and the No. 52-ranked player in ESPN's Top 60 juniors, lists Delaware among the leaders for her services along with Virginia, Rutgers, Vanderbilt, St. John's (maybe to team with Harris?), and Wisconsin-Green Bay.

That a player with Kestler's options is considering Delaware is important because Martin has said that last summer, the lure of playing with Delle Donne at a mid-major school like Delaware wasn't that attractive to high-profile recruits. Now that people have seen that Delle Donne is everything she's cracked up to be, at least one big-time recruit is giving the idea serious thought.

1 comment:

  1. Tesia, wants to play at higher level d1 basketball thats her reason for tranferring.