Recruits, transfers keep USport men’s basketball active

The month of April remained active for U-Sport men’s basketball programs with a flurry of new recruiting and transfer announcements, maybe none more prominent than 6’7″ Connor Gilmore who has joined the uOttawa Gee-Gees after three solid years at McMaster, culminating in an OUA 1st Team All-Star selection this past season.  Gilmore, who will have to sit out next season, is the second impact transfer joining the Gee-Gees after 5’11” point guard Sean Stoqua announced his decision to pursue graduate studies at uOttawa after three strong seasons at Acadia.  If sources are correct, coach James Derouin could have at least one more program-elevating transfer in time for this coming season – stay tuned.  Gilmore becomes at least the third ex-Marauder in recent memory to transfer to the perennially nationals-contending Gee-Gees program and is a huge loss to the McMaster program, already reeling from the graduation of two high-minutes rotation contributors in 6’4″ Rohan Boney and 6’4″ Lazar Kojovic.  The exodus from McMaster is telling and many around the game are whispering that some major changes could ensue in Hamilton in short order… As many know, UPEI Panthers are seeking their next coach and multiple sources indicate that ex-Panthers star (circa 90’s) Darrell Glenn will be named the new head man in the coming days.  If/when this happens, this is a great decision for UPEI as Glenn is richly deserving of a U-Sport head job and the Panthers job in particular.  Rewarding a prominent alumni who has proven over many years that he can coach at this level is a move that serves U-Sport men’s basketball very well.  Glenn played four seasons for the Panthers (89-90, 90-91, 92-93 and 93-94) and ranks second all-time on the Panthers career assist ledger.  Glenn, currently coaching with Seneca Sting (OCAA) and former provincial champion at Humber College, is well known in the PEI community and likely to bring a disciplined structure to the Panthers.  Glenn also has experience at the Canadian National team level, most prominently on Guelph coach Chris O’Rourke‘s staff with Youth teams several years ago… UBC pulled off another recruiting coup for themselves and U-Sport in general by securing a commitment from 6’10” Grant Shepherd, from Kelowna, B.C., who apparently turned down several D1 offers after a stellar high school and international career representing Canada on several occasions over the past few summers.  Shepherd, who North Pole Hoops has ranked as the #12 overall graduating high school senior in the country, announced his commitment shortly after appearing in the BioSteel All-Canadian game in Toronto, the pre-eminent showcase for the top high school players across the country which was played at the Goldring Center at U of T in early April.  Coach Kevin Hansen was also busy in Southern Ontario, securing the services of two touted wings from the Greater Toronto Area:  6’4″ Anthony McNish (Father Henry Carr), rated at #49 in the Class of 2017 by North Pole Hoops and 6’4″ Grant Audu (Thornlea), who NPH has rated at #74 in this Class.  UBC loses 6’6″ All-Canadian Jordan Jensen-Whyte and 6’4″ Will Ondrik who combined for almost 60 minutes and 26 points per game at the wing spots for the T-Birds this past season.  UBC also is scheduled to welcome touted 6’2″ guard Jauquin Bennett-Boire, a transfer from Saskatchewan to their back court… Calgary Dinos have added a couple of likely-impact transfers and one of the top big men out of high school as 6’8″ Mason Foreman, son of former Winnipeg Wesmen All-Canadian and Canadian National team star Jeff Foreman (circa 1990’s), committed to the Dinos recently.   Foreman, who NPH has rated at #71, is originally from Winnipeg but spent last season at Orangeville’s Athlete Institute and was the target of several top U-Sport programs.  Likely more impactful in the near-term for Calgary should be 6’1″ Lucas Mannes, a smooth shooting transfer from Trinity Western who lit the Dinos up from the three-point line a couple of seasons ago and burly 6’7″ Rhys Larry, originally from Cornwall, ON who transfers in from Acadia after sitting out last season with a major leg injury… McGill Redmen have added to their wing depth with two new recruits:  6’2″ combo guard Jamal Mayali (NPH #65) who played at Bill Crothers last season and 6’4″ sharpshooting three-point man Sam Jenkins (NPH #91) from Sir Allan McNab in Hamilton.  Redmen also expect that 6’1″ RSEQ All-Star Jenning Leung will return for his fifth and final season, fortifying an experience roster for a program that made their first-ever appearance at a U-Sport Final Four this past season.  Recall also that 6’1″ Alex Paquin (D1 American/Patriot League) will be transferring home to Montreal to play for the Redmen, giving McGill significant depth in the back court and on the wings.  Hope to have much more in the coming weeks.


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