Villanova won't be struggling for backcourt depth next season, even with Ash Yacoubou leaving the program to transfer elsewhere. However, the 'Cats will be sorely lacking in height above 6'7" next season, especially if they can't recruit additional big men to the program. Currently, only rising-sophomore Daniel Ochefu will possess the height to match up with opposing centers and power forwards on the 2013-14 roster.
To deal with that, Nova has offered and is recruiting a number of late-committing 2013 big men prospects, but the 'Cats could also look toward the transfer market.
The issue with transfer players is that NCAA rules normally require a player transferring from one Division I school to another to sit out and redshirt for a season. Waivers may be issued to allow some players to avoid that redshirt year, but that normally requires a family emergency or other documentable reason to be granted. Last summer, Tony Chennault was granted a waiver to play immediately at Villanova to be closer to his sick mother, but Dylan Ennis's transfer was not given the same treatment.
So if Villanova were to hit the transfer market for a big man, it would need to be someone eligible to seek a waiver from the NCAA, or they would not offer the depth that the 'Cats needed. Here are three candidates from Jeff Goodman's transfer list on CBSSports.com, who are reportedly eligible for a waiver:
- David Pellom - 6-8, 220lb - The former George Washington forward has one year of eligibility remaining in college and has opted to finish his career elsewhere. He last played in the 2011-12 season, averaging 10.4 points, 6.1 rebounds and 0.7 blocks. He shot 68.5% from the field and 53% from the free-throw line. He hails from Wilmington, North Carolina and has no known ties to the Philadelphia area.
- Josh Davis - 6-8, 215lb - Davis was the leading scorer and rebounder at Tulane last season, averaging 17.6 points and 10.7 rebounds for the Green Wave. He is considering either going pro overseas and returning to Tulane in addition to the option of transferring to a high-major program -- with the high-major transfer being the most-likely. He started his career at NC State and barely played in 2009-10 as a freshman, and will have one final season remaining.
- Brian Freeman - 6-8, 225lb - Another player who will seek his second transfer, Freeman appeared briefly in only one game for Fordham in 2010-11 before playing in 25 games with Binghamton last season. Goodman reports that the big junior is eligible to play immediately next season. The Michigan native averaged just 4.4 points and 2.8 rebounds last season and would not likely be a major contributor in either category in the New Big East, but he offers a big body that can play immediately, which could be enough if other options are limited. Freeman reportedly had an "attitude" problem while at Fordham, which lead to his transfer.