One of the nation’s top players could end up without a scholarship during the 2013-2014 season, thanks in large part to the Creighton Bluejays having exceeded the NCAA’s 13-scholarship limit.
The Jays went over the limit on Wednesday when they signed JuCo transfer James Milliken out of Cowley County Community College in Kansas. Creighton must meet or be under the limit by July. The Omaha World-Herald reports that the two most likely scenarios would involve either creating a situation that would force one player to transfer or have Head Coach Greg McDermott foot the bill for his son’s educational costs, essentially making Doug McDermott a walk-on for the season.
If I’m a betting man, I’d bet the elder McDermott does his part to keep his team together and coughs up the tuition. Creighton has never been the type of institution to force players out of the program if other options are available and I don’t expect them to start now.
As far as the Milliken signing, it gives Creighton yet another player with the ability to create his own shot against Big East-caliber players. While at Cowley County, the 6’2 guard averaged 17 points per game as freshman and 18.5 last season.
Milliken joins Devin Brooks, a Harlem, NY product out of Iowa Western Community College, as the second JuCo transfer in Creighton’s recruiting class this season. They’ll be joined by incoming freshman Toby Hegner of Wisconsin, Zach Hanson of South Dakota and Darian Harris out of the state of Arkansas.
Local sports-talk radio hosts in Omaha were heard Wednesday crediting Doug McDermott’s return as the catalyst for acquiring Milliken, who picked Creighton over the Big 12‘s Texas Christian University. The website Jucorecruitng.com ranked Milliken at No. 39 in their latest list of the top 100 junior college players in the nation.