Much in the way that the frenzy around MLB’s winter meetings and the NBA’s star players hitting free agency captivate fans as much as or more than regular season games, so too do the machinations of the summer and winter transfer windows in soccer. As the winter transfer window opens on Thursday, I thought about an alternate reality where the NCAA also had a transfer window to deal with in between the fall and spring semesters. While English teams are roughly halfway through their round-robin season when the window opens, Ivy basketball teams have nearly completed their nonconference schedule and will have an opportunity to correct weaknesses, address injuries, or move the focus completely towards next year without worrying about getting relegated.
Along with IHO resident soccer expert Peter Andrews, I thought up moves each team could make in this hypothetical, never could, would or should happen situation. We will also be ignoring that in reality, Duke, Kansas or Kentucky would buy up all of the good players anyway.
BROWN: LOANS Kendall Jackson from Columbia and Andre Chatfield from Harvard No Bear averages more than 3.5 assists per game and no starter has an assist/turnover ratio better than 1.1. Thus, the Bears bring in two guards buried on their respective team’s depth charts in the hopes that one sticks as the ball handler of the future and a permanent transfer can be worked out after the season.
COLUMBIA: BUYS Gabas Maldunas from Dartmouth. Columbia remains weakest in the frontcourt, where Cory Osetkowski has put together an inconsistent campaign in scoring and on the glass. They”d pay a hefty transfer fee to pry Gabas Maldunas away from Dartmouth, a team going nowhere fast this year. Maldunas would instantly upgrade the post presence for Columbia. In addition to cash, the Lions would send monstrously tall center Conor Voss on a loan to Dartmouth, in the hopes that some regular playing time will reveal basketball skills.
CORNELL: BUYS Tavon Blackmon from Brown and Dylan Jones from Penn To make up for their big loss (see below), the Big Red gamble on a pair of sophomores from some other middling Ivy rosters. Blackmon has had a high usage rate now that he’s getting starting minutes, which has resulted in boots in points, assists, and turnovers. He gets a chance to play his game without consequence on a team with no expectations. Jones is caught between both upperclassmen and freshmen with promise in the Penn frontcourt and a change of scenery plus some minutes could help him develop over the next two and a half seasons.
DARTMOUTH: BUYS Alec Brennan and Khyan Rayner from Princeton, LOANS Connor Voss from Columbia Dartmouth goes all-in on the rebuilding front after selling Maldunas. Along with the previously mentioned Voss pickup, the Green grab two Princeton underclassmen who have played in nearly all of their games but don’t seem poised to play a big role on the Tigers this year. Dartmouth has a few months to gauge whether these three plus Alex Mitola are enough for the Big Green to make a push for the top half of the league in 2015-16.
HARVARD: BUYS Rafael Maia from Brown Reeling off their embarrassment at Virginia and loss to Arizona State, Harvard makes a bold move to not just try best online casino and wrap up the league but to head into the second weekend of the NCAA tournament. Maia gives Harvard a boost on the defensive end pairing with Steve Moundou-Missi and suddenly turns Harvard’s relative weakness in the frontcourt into a strength. The senior gives the Crimson size to not just tower over most Ivy teams but compete with the post players they would likely square up against in March.
PENN: BUYS Grant Mullins from Columbia The Quakers need more consistent guard play and a team with eyes on 2015-16, the team would have a point guard in place with the now-junior. Mullins’ injury history is a risk but he has proven in the past he can excel as both a distributor and scorer. He is not likely to get back into the Columbia rotation barring freshman Kyle Castlin struggling with his newfound minutes. Mullins could accelerate the development of a promising group of freshman in Philadelphia.
PRINCETON: BUYS Shonn Miller from Cornell Princeton goes for a homerun, picking up a senior forward to put alongside Hans Brase and put fear into the rest of the league. This move gets Miller off of a miserable Cornell team and gives him a shot at playing in the postseason for the first time in his career, on a team that could definitely use an offensive boost and some senior leadership for a once-great but now mediocre program.
YALE: BUYS Tony Hicks from Penn. After Brandon Sherrod bailed on the Bulldogs in favor of his a capella future, Yale has needed both a guard and depth and Hicks likely needs a change of scenery. Hicks could create a formidable backcourt rotation with Jack Montague and add some scoring in 2015-16 after Javier Duren, Matt Townsend and Armani Cotton graduate.