A random thought occurred to me while I was lamenting the current status of our basketball program and how it's possible that CBH could have fallen so far so fast. I don't know what the reasons are, but the craziest thing of all is that I don't think any program in the history of college basketball can legitimately say this: A starting five composed entirely of currently playing transfers from one school would make a better starting five than the one that currently plays for the team they transferred from. (I'm going to use Howland's most preferred starting five, but we all know this is a fluid situation). At first I thought there was no way this is possible, but I'll let you be the judge:
PG - Matt Carlino vs Lazeric Jones: Carlino has yet to play one minute for BYU and it doesn't even matter; how pathetic is that? Anyone who can give me one good reason why Jones deserves the nod over Carlino, I'm all ears. As it stands, the transfers are already up one on at the most important spot on the floor.
SG - Jerime Anderson vs Chace Stanback: Jermie, along with Lamb and Powell, is one of the few guys actually competing, but let's take a look at the numbers because this one is truly a close call. Chase is averaging 13 point, 6 rebounds and 1 block. Jerime is averaging 13 points, 3 rebounds, and 3.5 assists. Jerime is shooting a very solid .514 from the floor to go along with a .474 from the land of three. Just when you think we might have a victory, here comes Chace. Chace matches Jerime with .514 shooting to go along with a very impressive .500 from three. It's early in the season and percentages will normalize, but Chace is taking on average 4.8 threes a game so the stats are legit. Add in the fact that Chace stands a solid 6'8 to Jerime 6'3 and unfortunately, the point goes to the transfers once again.
SF - Tyler Lamb vs Mike Moser: I hate to do this to Lamb because he also out there competing and has truly improved his offensive game, but Mike Moser has been an absolute revelation in the desert. With averages of 16 ppg, 13.0 rbg, 3.2apg, 3.8spg, and 1.2bpg; Moser has been everything he was supposed to be when he decided to come to UCLA after Lute Olson was out at Arizona. There is no need to even bring up Lamb's stats in this discussion, Moser would easily be the best player on our current team and a potential Pac-12 player of the year candidate. In case anyone was wondering, UNLV is 6-0 with 2 former Bruins starting and will most likely be playing UNC tomorrow night. We've already lost to the transfers, but lets keep going.
PF - Travis Wear vs Drew Gordon: I know Gordon is not a friend of the program by any means, and deservedly so, but I can't help but think there is a lot going on behind the scenes that we have absolutely no idea about. New Mexico is off to a tough start (but they do have two wins against D1 teams unlike us) and our old pal Gordon is averaging a double double; 10 points and 10 rebounds a game. Once again, if you've been following our team, I don't think I even need to discuss Travis Wear. I know Gordon was a problem, but there is no arguing who is the better player. Another win for the transfers.
C - David Wear vs Jmison Morgan: Good ol Bobo. When you start to think of it, it's almost comical all the things that have taken place around our program over the past couple of years. I needed a center and he was the only one I could think, but I feel like I am leaving someone out. At any rate, Bobo hasn't played a game for the Bears yet due to injury, but once he returns, I'm sure he can contribute at the very least as much as the interchangeable Wear twins do. We will go ahead and score this one a draw even though every last inch of me says the Morgan wins.
So there you have it, the transfers have us beat at every position. They have a legitimate star in Mike Moser. They have the perfect complimentary scorer in Stanback. They have a rugged defender and rebounder at the power forward spot who can also put the ball in the bucket. They have size, speed and quickness on the perimeter with beef inside. Carlino and Morgan are the wild cards, but all they would have to do is contribute and if Carlino is half as good as he is supposed to be, this team would be looking at a sweet 16 run. Ironically, if I had to pick any coach to coach a team of cast offs like this, it would probably be Ben Howland.
I could keep on writing about how baffling this is all to me, but I will say this in closing. Those who say CBH isn't recruiting the right players might just be a little wrong. He definitely is recruiting at least some of the right players, but whether it be the NBA or another University, he just isn't keeping them.