With Hamilton and Buckley announcing their transfers (along with the expected departures of Brackins and Gilstrap), although ISU already has 3 incoming players for 2010, they still have 3 open scholarships.
Doing a quick Rivals search for uncommitted guys with offers out there from ISU, there are 3 guys that pop up:
- John Wilkins: a 6'9, 215lb PF with offers from Providence, Indiana, and Iowa State. He's a JUCO out of Southeastern CC in Burlington, Iowa. He apparently hasn't been playing at all, as he's a native of France and had some eligibilty issues with the NJCAA, similar to Lucca's situation. Either way, when he goes D1, he will have to sit out the first 5 games of the year, but will have 3 years of eligibility. He originally committed to Bradley coming out of high school.
Will Clyburn: a 6-6, 185lb SF out of Marshalltown CC, a teammate and friend of ISU signee DeMarcus Phillips. Clyburn has offers from Central Michigan, Duquesne, UNI, Saint Louis, Utah, Wichita State, and ISU. I have think we're towards the top of his list. First, we're the only BCS program that offered him, and second, he has a friend on our team.
- Darrell Haley: a 6-11, 225lb C out of Palmdale High School, in Palmdale, CA. I don't know much about him other than he has a 3.8 GPA in High School, and has offers from ISU and Wyoming.
I'm not sure what to make of this. Clyburn seems like a slam dunk (but I have no inside info on this), while Wilkins seems like a good player. At the same time, looking at the roster right now, with Wilkins and Clyburn possibly coming in, we would have 5 guys on our roster who had some JUCO playing time, with 2 or 3 likely starting.
JUCOs can help fill some voids when you're first building a program, but we're hitting the reset button here again. The Iowa JUCOs are our recruiting pipeline, and that isn't the main pipeline you want to have. I think it's fine to bring in 1 JUCO per year, and the JUCOs in Iowa are solid programs, but you can't build a NCAA Division I, BCS Conference program by relying on JUCOs. These guys are JUCOs either because of academics, flaws in their game, or flaws in their size/athletic ability.
I'm not ripping on the guys above. If I were in their situation, I would do the same thing.
I don't want to make this a especially long post, but recruiting and retaining players is the biggest problem. It's weird. Players typically commit to the coach, not the school. I have no idea what the guys we have are committing to, because for most it's apparently neither.
Either way, we could potentially have 6 new guys coming in for next year. I hope they bring nametags.