Kim English has had as good of a first week and a half as you could have possibly hoped for if you’re a Providence Friars basketball fan. Coach English had already received the commitments from Corey Floyd Jr., Alyn Breed, and Quante Berry from last year’s team but there were still two outstanding decisions that Friartown was anxiously awaiting. The two All-Big East selections from last year’s team, Bryce Hopkins (1st Team) and Devin Carter (Honorable Mention) were the most important players for Coach English to retain.
Within a matter of seconds of one another, the two players announced that they would both be staying at Providence for their Junior years.
Bryce Hopkins, one of only two unanimous First Team All-Big East selections (the other being BE POY Tyler Kolek), led the Friars last season in both points (15.8 ppg) and rebounds (8.5 rpg) and will be looking to expand his game even further after being “the guy” for the first time in college and increasing his workload tremendously from averaging just 6.4 mpg his Freshman season at Kentucky to 34.9 mpg during his Sophomore campaign at Providence. Working on his conditioning would be a major plus, and I’m not saying that it wasn’t good, but playing that many minutes a game and taking the punishment of a full season in the Big East can certainly be taxing on the body.
Devin Carter may have the best two-way player in the entire conference last season, being the only player to finish in the Top-10 in both steals (1.8 spg) and blocks (1.1 bpg) in the conference. Carter averaged 13.0 ppg, 4.9 rpg, and 2.5 apg but needs to be more efficient and consistent from three-point range, finishing the season under 30% from distance for the second year in a row (26.7% Freshman year; 29.9% Sophomore year).
With the additions of George Mason players Josh Oduro and Justyn Fernandez already committed to making their way to Friartown next season, the next steps for Coach English and his staff should be having Jayden Pierre return from the portal, targeting another big, and getting another shooter to round out the rotation. There are plenty of guys hitting the portal and Coach English was even the first to talk to one of them once they entered the portal…
The NCAA making the announcement that it would be very hard to garner a waiver for a player transferring for a second time without having to sit out a year certainly didn’t hurt in nudging Hopkins and Carter into deciding to stay either.
How about some highlights from our dynamic duo from last season? Why not?
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