The USF men’s basketball team is off to its best start since the 2001-02 season, and could add another weapon to its lineup soon.
Sophomore point guard Anthony Crater, who transferred from Ohio State in the off-season, will be eligible to play in USF’s home game against Central Michigan on Dec. 13.
Crater, who played in 10 games with the Buckeyes last year, had to sit out this semester because of NCAA transfer rules.
USF coach Stan Heath said Crater should make an immediate impact if and when he plays.
“He’s our truest point guard,” Heath said. “He’s pretty good. That’ll change our team a little bit when he comes in our program.”
Right now, Heath said he’s trying to balance senior Chris Howard and sophomore Justin Leemow at point guard, with junior Dominique Jones as the primary shooting guard.
“I’m trying to steer away from Dominique doing a lot of that (playing point guard),” Heath said. “The South Carolina (win) was a little unique because (guard) Devan Downey’s just a ball hawk. I didn’t necessarily want Chris and Justin to go up against him. Dominique did a little more ball handling in that game.”
Heath said Crater has benefitted from sitting out and is coming along “terrific.”
“The time off learning our system and improving the different parts of his game … he’s made a significant improvement with his jump shot, running the team, and having a voice out there as a point guard,” Heath said.
USF coach Jim Leavitt said after Monday’s practice that starting center Sampson Genus will likely miss Saturday’s game at Uconn with an ankle injury.
“It’s doubtful we play him,” Leavitt said. “He’s going to get treatment all week and we’ll see.”
Genus, who injured his ankle Saturday against Miami, has started all 11 games this year.
Sophomore center Kevin McCaskill, who hasn’t started and has played in only four games this year, is working with the first team, Leavitt said.
Leavitt said it’s too early to tell whether or not sophomore safety Jerrell Young, who was wearing a boot during Monday’s practice, will play against Connecticut on Saturday.
Sophomore forward Augustus Gilchrist was named to the Big East weekly honor roll after scoring 27 points and seven rebounds in games against Florida Atlantic and Kent State last week.
Gilchrist scored 23 points in the second half of Friday’s 78-58 win against FAU and leads USF in scoring, rebounding, three-point shooting, free-throw shooting and blocks.