Miles Wilson, a 6-5 freshman guard from Mount St. Mary’s, is the latest mid-major player to announce he is seeking a transfer to a bigger program; and the University of Miami is among the schools interested in him, according to Scout.com.
Other schools wooing the Baltimore native include Kentucky, Penn State, North Carolina State, Virginia and UMass.
Wilson had his moment in the national spotlight when he scored 22 points in a 76-56 loss to No. 1 Villanova in the NCAA Tournament. He averaged 11.8 points as a freshman, and would have three years of eligibility remaining after sitting out next season per transfer rules.
Joining the recent trend of mid-major players “transferring up” after a year or two of success, Wilson announced on Monday he is leaving the Mountaineers. Three teammates had already announced they were transferring from a team that won the Northeast Conference title.
Hurricanes coach Jim Larrañaga said last month that he and his staff were looking for a transfer guard who could spend next year learning the system and then step in for the 2018-19 season in case Bruce Brown leaves for the NBA after his sophomore season. Lonnie Walker, a highly-touted 6-5 shooting guard from Reading, Pa., will be a freshman for the Canes this upcoming season, but could also bolt for the NBA next spring if he has a good year.
Miami has had success with transfer guards in the past. Shane Larkin (from DePaul), Angel Rodriguez (from Kansas State), and Sheldon McClellan (from Texas) led the Hurricanes to Sweet 16s.
Another player UM is pursuing is Jimmy Nichols, Jr., a 6-8 forward who will be a senior at Conway (S.C.) High in the fall.
According to the player’s Twitter account, he has received 16 scholarship offers, most of them in the past week. He said the teams recruiting him the hardest are UM, Nebraska, Coastal Carolina, Old Dominion, and College of Charleston. Others on the list include Georgetown, Wake Forest, Hofstra, Murray State and Towson.
Nichols, Jr., averaged 15 points and 10 rebounds last season, and was named to the South Carolina 5A All-State team. His high school coach is Michael Hopkins, who previously was head coach at Coastal Carolina and an assistant coach at Virginia Tech. Nichols, Jr., plays travel ball with Garner Road.
Sacred Heart transfer guard Quincy McKnight is another player on UM’s list. He is a sophomore who would have two years of eligibility left after sitting out next season. McKnight, 6-3, averaged 18.9 points, 4.9 rebounds and 3 assists for Sacred Heart last season. Other schools on his list are Wichita State, Western Kentucky, Monmouth, Seton Hall and Creighton.