Ross-Miller Bolsters Pearl's Lineup of Guards

K.C. Ross-Miller talks about his transition to the Auburn basketball team after making the move this summer from New Mexico State.

Auburn, Ala.--Coach Bruce Pearl is hoping that a pair of senior transfers at the guard spots will make a positive impact on the 2014-15 Auburn basketball team.

While newcomer Antoine Mason from Niagara is expected to make the biggest impact as a scorer, another fifth-year senior, K.C. Ross-Miller, is expected to be more of a distributor of the basketball.

Asked if Ross-Miller can play both point guard and shooting guard, Pearl said, “I think he can, but I think he is better with the ball (point guard).”

The Tigers also picked up another point guard transfer, Kareem Canty, who enrolled this summer. He will have to redshirt after playing at Marshall University last year and will be a junior in eligibility for the 2015-16 season.

“The great thing about having Kareem out is I have K.C. this year and I have Kareem for next year,” Pearl said. “It really gives us great insurance for the future.”

Ross-Miller enrolled at classes for the second summer session at Auburn after finishing his degree at New Mexico State. Because he has graduated and because he has a year of eligibility remaining, he can play immediately for the Tigers.

“It is going good,” Ross-Miller said when asked about his transition to Auburn. “I am trying to adjust to everything, but I am learning a lot right now.”

He noted that he knows his way to his classes, the basketball arena and some other areas, but adds, “I am still trying to learn where everything is.”

Last season the point guard started 29 games for the Cowboys and averaged 8.3 points, 3.5 assists and 2.2 rebounds per outing. He shot 43.7 percent from the field, 39.3 percent on threes (24-61) and 82 percent at the foul line (100-122). He was credited with 104 assists and 58 turnovers.

“I want to be better than I was last year and I have team goals,” Ross-Miller said. “I want to be able to make it to the (NCCA) tournament. I want to shoot a better percentage from the three-point line and want to become a better all-around player.”

He noted that so far the transition to his new team and university has been smooth. “Since day one, even on my visit, we have all meshed well together like we have been knowing each other for a long time so we all get along together.”

K.C. Ross-Miller is shown in action for New Mexico State.

Ross-Miller, who was a standout high school player in Texas, noted his new team has potential to be successful. “We have got some good pieces with new guys and some old guys like K.T. (Harrell) and Tajh (Shamsid-Deen),” he said. “There are a lot of guys to compete against in practice so I think we are going to be good.”

Although he has had just a handful of practices with the Tigers, Mason said he can tell the offense will be one he will enjoy playing in this season. “There are a lot of opportunities for the guards,” he pointed out.

“I like to play fast and try to push down the court pretty quickly, get the defense on their heels and try to score early,” said Ross-Miller, who noted that he believes he will get plenty of chances to do that with the Tigers.

He added that he plans to put in a lot of work this summer to make sure he is ready for a productive senior performance. “I am trying to get stronger, quicker and be a more explosive player,” Ross-Miller said. “I want to finish better, especially around the rim.”

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