Notebook: Big East Hoops Roundup

There's plenty of off-season basketball news going on around the Big East Conference. We've got the latest on UConn's Josh Boone and A.J. Price, plus news of a transfer from a former Louisville recruit and more. InsideTheVille.com will get you up to speed in this latest Big East Hoops Roundup.

Huskies lose one; gain another

The UConn Huskies lost a player and gained one this week. 6'10 Josh Boone, who declared for the NBA Draft earlier this spring, decided he'll stay in the draft and hire an agent. Boone averaged 10 points, 7 rebounds and two blocked shots as a junior and was the 2004-05 Big East Defensive Player of the Year. He's projected as a borderline first-round pick.

"The past two months have accomplished exactly what I hoped they would. They have shown me where I am as a player, and what I need to do to prepare for life in the NBA," Boone said. "I am confident that I am making the right decision, and improving my draft position with each workout and each day."


Price will finally take the
court at UCONN.

While Boone won't be returning, Jim Calhoun's Huskies did receive some good news this week. A.J. Price, a sophomore guard who sat out the past two seasons because of illness and suspension for computer theft, has been cleared to play next season.

"This is great news for A.J. and his family," Calhoun said. "I am very excited for A.J. and look forward to him taking the court with his teammates in the very near future. He is a young man who has been through a lot, but has worked very hard through it all to get to this point and move forward. I know the future will bring good things for him and that A.J. has a chance to be a very special player for us."

Price will lead a young team next season after the departures of Boone, forwards Rudy Gay, Hilton Armstrong and Ed Nelson, and guards Marcus Williams, Denham Brown and Rashad Anderson.

Former Louisville recruit to transfer

David Huertas, a reserve guard on Florida's NCAA Title team and former Louisville recruit, will transfer out of the Gators program, according to Fox Sports' Jeff Goodman.

Huertas, who chose Florida over Louisville coming out of high school, averaged 2.5 points per game as a freshman.

Will Big East rule NBA Draft?

How good was the Big East last season? Well, here's one way to answer that question; Eight (8) Big East players are projected as first round NBA Draft picks later this month in Frank Burlison's most recent mock NBA Draft, including four "Lottery" picks (Rudy Gay, Marcus Williams and Hilton Armstrong (UCONN) and Randy Foye (Villanova).

Burlison also projects Villanova sophomore point guard Kyle Lowry, Pittsburgh junior center Aaron Gray, UConn junior center Josh Boone and Rutgers junior guard Quincy Douby will be taken in the first round.


Mike Williams is headed to
Cincinnati.

How do the Big East's 8 projected first round picks compare to the nation's top leagues? No other conference has more than four projected first round selections – that being the Big Ten and Atlantic Coast Conferences. Here are tallies for the rest of the conferences: Southeastern Conference (3), PAC-10 (2), C-USA (2), and Big 12 (1).

Big East Notes

  • Former Texas forward Mike Williams announced last week that he's transferring to Cincinnati for his final two seasons of eligibility.
  • Two Marquette players, forwards Matt Mortensen and Ryan Amoroso have left the Golden Eagles program this spring.
  • The top unsigned high school prospect, 7'3" Hasheem Thabeet, signed with UConn last week after visiting both Cincinnati and Louisville.
  • Other impact spring signings: PG Eugene Harvey and WG Larry Davis (Seton Hall), McDonald's All-American PG Scottie Reynolds (Villanova).


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