Here's another in the series looking at players joining conference programs for the coming season.
Up now ...
- T.J. CLYNE (6-8 forward, Plane, Tex., H.S.): He averaged 16.8 points, 7.7 rebounds and 2.3 assists per game as a high school senior last season. The son of former women's great Nancy Lieberman, Cline is reported to be a high-skilled, versatile forward.
- TAHJERE McCALL (6-4 guard, Engineering & Science H.S., Philadelphia): A very slender 160-pounder as he begins his college career. He averaged 15.4 points per game as a high school senior, but the best part of his game might be his work as a point guard. He is reportedly a very good passer with good court vision.
- DEVON WHITE (6-8 Center, transfer from La Salle): A bruising, 240-pound inside presence, he averaged 5.8 points and 4.7 rebounds per game as a part-time starter for the Explores last season. He averaged 4.3 points and 3.7 rebounds over three seasons at La Salle and, then, graduated from that school a year early in May. NCAA rules allow graduates with remaining eligibility to transfer to a school that offers a masters-degree program not available at the player's original school without having to sit out a redshirt season.
- RAYVON HARRIS (6-5 guard/forward, transfer from Rhode Island): He only played 80 total minutes, averaging 1.5 points per game at Rhode Island in 2011-12. As a transfer, he will redshirt at Niagara this season and be eligible for the 2013-14 seasons with three remaining seasons of eligibility. Prior to college he attended Flora MacDonald Academy in Red Springs, N.C., and averaged 18.0 points, 9.0 rebounds and 3.0 assists per game there as a senior.
ANALYSIS: The Purple Eagles are well set with perimeter players, but really needed a post presence. The hope is that White, who played three seasons fairly well in the Atlantic 10 Conference, can give that to this team. However, White, though, had surgery on his Achilles tendon in early June and might not be ready to play right away, although he is expected to get on the court fairly early in the season. Without White right away it could mean that the multi-talented Clyne will play a significant role early, but he is more a skilled player than a power one. McCall, a talented point guard from the tough Philadelphia area, surely has a bright future at Niagara, but currently has talented upperclass perimeter players ahead of him this season. Harris, an athletic wing player that coach Joe Mihalich seems to attract and put to good use, should be a key addition a year from now.