Besides turning around Iowa State basketball so that it has become a formidable presence in the Big 12, the man has attracted many a transfer player to Ames. The most recent of these success stories is, of course, Marshall transfer DeAndre Kane.
With Kane gone, Iowa State had need of another do-it-all guard to replace Kane, and Hoiberg found it in UNLV transfer Bryce Dejean-Jones.
Dejean-Jones committed to transfer to Iowa State over breakfast in Hoiberg’s home on Sunday, and now the Cyclones look even better for the 2014 season.
Dejean-Jones himself pointed out how similar his game is to Kane’s, and his 6’5” frame should help him succeed on the wing. At UNLV he averaged 13.6 points a game, and that should only increase with Hoiberg’s high energy offense that rarely scores below 70 points a game.
Iowa State basketball definitely needed some good news, as the main stories recently had been Percy Gibson’s transferring as well as Abdel Nader’s indefinite suspension after an OWI. Now, things are looking up.
Of course, DeJean-Jones is not the only transfer to make an impact this upcoming season. Hoiberg also snagged Marquette transfer Jameel McKay, a 6’9” forward who should be a handful down low.
So the starting lineup looks set at this point with these two transfers taking over for Kane and Big 12 Player of the Year Melvin Ejim, and Georges Niang, Dustin Hogue, and Monte Morris rounding it out. Naz Long and Matt Thomas will be the first guys off the bench.
There’s only one small concern I have with all these star transfers coming to play for Iowa State: they are in and out relatively quickly. I prefer guys to come in as freshman and develop each year. That’s not to say Iowa State has not done this – Melvin Ejim played four years in Ames – but I like to see teams that develop over the course of several years, with guys growing up and getting better together. It’s why Michigan State is so successful: Tom Izzo is able to keep guys together so they gel as a team and have successful runs for consecutive years. Hoiberg has been a huge success since taking over at Iowa State, and these transfers he nabs do add a lot, but he still needs to attract high school seniors to keep building up the program. I’m sure he will – just look at Georges Niang and Monte Morris – but I still feel the need to stress the point.
But enough concerns! Dejean-Jones is a great addition to the Mayor’s squad, and the Cyclones as a result look very solid here in the early offseason.