Quinnipiac's new look
The lineup is changing for the Quinnipiac men’s basketball team.
Tom Moore announced the signing of two recruits to national letters of intent Tuesday while starting point guard Casey Cosgrove has decided to transfer.
Cosgrove’s decision comes on the heels of Moore’s strong 2008 recruiting class. The Bobcats will bring in three guards, including James Johnson, a highly lauded point guard from New York City power Bishop Loughlin High.
Also, Jeremy Baker, who missed last year after transferring from Garden City Community College in Kansas, will be joining the team. Baker can play any of three positions and led his junior college team in assists.
That left Cosgrove clearly battling for playing time next season.
"He came in to my office at the end of the season and expressed his feelings about his future," Moore said.
"I want to thank Casey for the dedication and commitment he made to the program for the past two years. His competitiveness and toughness were integral parts of our success this past season."
Cosgrove averaged 8.0 points and was second on the team with 86 assists as Quinnipiac finished 15-15, 11-7 in the Northeast Conference, in Moore’s first season. He also shot 38 percent from 3-point range making 56.
Cosgrove started 29 games at point guard last year and was fourth on the team in minutes played. Cosgrove also hit several big shots to help the Bobcats get off to a fast start in the conference.
Quinnipiac received letters from DeAndre Bynum, a 6-foot-5 sharpshooter from Memphis, Tenn., and Harold Washington, a 6-2 combo guard from Brandywine, Md.
Moore said that Bynum was very highly rated as a young player playing in the Memphis area and for national power AAU teams. He transferred to Progressive Christian Academy in Camp Hills, Md., as a senior.
"He’s got good size for a wing at this level and can shoot it deep," Moore said. "I think he can be an impact player right away."
Washington was impressed with Quinnipiac’s new facility and their commitment to building the basketball program.
"He’s very quick and a good shooter," Moore said. "He’s got the potential to be a very good defensive player. He isn’t that way right now, but he can be. He was a big part of an undefeated high school team that went to the state final before losing."
Eric Coggins, a 6-8 power forward from Canton, Ohio, also signed with the Bobcats in the early signing period.
"Overall, I’m very happy with the four kids as a group," Moore said. "They’ll improve our athleticism and our ability to defend, which is important. Last year, I found myself coaching the offense a lot when I want to be able to concentrate on defense."
Moore expects the quartet to give his team more quality depth. He said that several of his top players were battling injuries down the stretch and it played a major part in the team’s late-season struggles.
The Bobcats lost three of their last four games and fell to fifth in the NEC, forcing them to open the tournament on the road. They lost to Mount St. Mary’s in that game.
Cosgrove’s decision to transfer opens up another scholarship, which has not been filled.
The team’s biggest loss will be that of senior DeMario Anderson, who led the team in scoring each of the last two seasons. His 21.7 average was among the nation’s leaders last year.
"No one person’s going to replace DeMario’s 21 points a night," Moore said, "but we hope to get more contributions from throughout the team."