There’s not too much to write about with the current state of Northwestern men’s basketball, so we thought we’d open things up to take a look at how all those guys who transferred away from Chris Collins’ program are doing. Northwestern has seen five of its players leave for other programs in the past few seasons, and as it turns out, many look poised for legitimate runs at a conference title and potential NCAA Tournament berths in 2020.
Without further ado, an individual breakdown:
Aaron Falzon — Qunnipiac
Season Stats: 16 games / 9 starts / 23.8 minutes / 7.2 points / 3.1 rebounds / 1.1 assists / 36.1 FG% / 32.3 3FG%
Team record: 9-7 (4-2) — T-1st in MAAC
The 6-foot-8 forward opened the season as a starter for the Bobcats, but has since been relegated to a role coming off the bench in conference play. His 7.2 point average per game so far marks the highest since his freshman year average in Evanston, and he’s a perfect 5-for-5 from the FT line this year!
Despite losing his starting spot, Falzon dropped a season-high 15 points against Manhattan last week. If the Bobcats can keep up a fine run of form in the MAAC, the man who missed out on Northwestern’s 2017 NCAA Tournament run with an injury could have one final opportunity to get to the Big Dance.
Isiah Brown — Grand Canyon
Season Stats: 19 games / 16 starts / 30.9 minutes / 9.3 points / 4.4 rebounds / 1.5 assists / 42.1 FG% / 31.0 3FG%
Team record: 8-11 (3-2) — 4th in WAC
Brown, who departed from Evanston two years ago, has emerged as a starter for the GCU Antelopes of the Western Athletic Conference. The ‘Lopes and their vaunted crowd have stumbled their way to an 8-11 record thus far, but they have gotten some impressive games out of their new starting point guard, who notably dropped 18 points in a home loss to Illinois earlier this season. His 1.0 Assist/Turnover ratio isn’t quite as impressive, though.
Jordan Ash — Wright State
Season Stats: 21 games / 1 start / 16.7 minutes / 4.2 points / 2.7 rebounds / 2.0 assists / 45.2 FG% / 12.5 3FG%
Team record: 17-4 (7-1) — 1st in Horizon League
The former NU captain has struggled to earn significant minutes for the Horizon League-leading Wright State Raiders, starting just one game for them in his final year of eligibility. That being said, if the Raiders stay hot and earn a berth to the NCAA Tournament for the second time in three years, it’s unlikely Ash will be regretting his decision to transfer from Northwestern.
Barret Benson — Southern Illinois
Season Stats: 20 games / 17 starts / 24.9 minutes / 9.9 points / 5.5 rebounds / 0.8 assists / 0.8 blocks / 51.3 FG% / 25.0 3FG%
Team record: 10-10 (4-3) — 4th in Missouri Valley Conference
The big man is giving the Salukis some solid play in a starting role, averaging nearly 10 points per game. He’s also made seven three-pointers this year, which is pretty cool considering he only made two throughout his three-year career in Evanston. Benson recorded his second career double-double, going for 18 points and 10 boards in a blowout win over Drake this past week. The Salukis currently sit in the top half of the MVC.
Rapolas Ivanauskas— Colgate
Season Stats: 20 games / 20 starts / 29.5 minutes / 12.7 points / 7.3 rebounds / 2.2 assists / 43.0 FG% / 24.4 3FG%
Team record: 15-5 (6-1) — 1st in Patriot
Rap is still very much killing it since helping lead the Raiders to a tournament bid and near-upset of No. 2 seed Tennessee in last year’s March Madness. Colgate is sitting pretty atop the Patriot League at 6-1 thus far, and Ivanauskas is second on the team in scoring with 12.7 per game, which is actually over three points below what he averaged last season.
His shooting has fallen off a little bit as well, but if the Raiders keep it up, get ready for a second straight March Madness with Rap and the Raiders. We may become a Colgate blog yet.