Transfers could play vital role for Robert Morris men’s basketball
A closer look at the Robert Morris men’s basketball team:
Players to watch
Josh Williams: On a team with four returning starters, the 6-foot-2 senior guard is Robert Morris’ top scoring threat. He averaged 14.5 points and shot 37.9 percent on 3-pointers last season. He tied an NCAA Division I single-game record for 3-pointers (15) in a 104-57 victory against Mount Aloysius and owns Colonials records for field goals (16) and points (49) from that game.
Jalen Hawkins: The 6-2 sophomore, a junior-college transfer, shot 46.7 percent from the field (71 for 152) and averaged 6.5 points for Odessa (Texas) College last season. He also provide another ball-handler. He comes to Robert Morris with three years of eligibility.
A.J. Bramah: A 6-7 junior and another junior-college transfer, Braham scored 26 points in a game twice for Sheridan (Wyo.) last season. He hit 52.8 percent of his shots while averaging 13.2 points and 8.8 rebounds. He can play for the Colonials for two seasons.
The season will be a success if …
Coach Andy Toole’s recruiting efforts in luring Hawkins and Bramah to Robert Morris pay dividends. Toole already had the nucleus of a good team with returning starters Josh and Jon Williams, Charles Bain and Yannis Mendy, who led the team to an 18-victory season in 2018-19. A difficult nonconference schedule that includes Pitt and Notre Dame will help prepare RMU for the Northeast Conference season.
The season will be a failure if …
Toole can’t find a capable replacement for graduated guard Matty McConnell, who totaled twice as many assists (100) as turnovers (50) last season while shooting almost 40 percent. Players as solid as McConnell are difficult to find at the mid-major level.
Prediction: 18-18, 10-8
Jerry DiPaola is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jerry by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .