After deciding upon transferring last week, Niagara's high-scoring guard Antoine Mason (25.6 ppg) has received all sorts of high-major interest, and for good reason. The son of former Knicks player Anthony Mason, Antoine scored 30+ points 12 times last season including a 34-point effort against Seton Hall on opening night at Prudential Center.
Naturally, 247Sports.com reported Thursday night that Cincinnati, Oklahoma State, Seton Hall, St. John's, Providence, Auburn, Wake Forest, Maryland, Missouri, Texas A&M, and other schools have reached out. In a more detailed report, Zach Braziller of the New York Post writes that Boston College, UCLA, and Providence have contacted the Masons. Zach's story includes the all-important bit that Niagara has allowed Mason a 'permission to contact' letter [which allows any school to recruit him] but it remains unclear if the university will block potential destinations on Niagara's schedule next season upon the player's release. Today, ESPN's Jeff Goodman followed up with a refreshed list of schools that are seeking Mason's services (note: Goodman is incorrect about the "release" part and the schools in the first tweet appear to be in the same order as the list reported by 247Sports.)
Niagara transfer @antoine_mason has his release, has been bombarded by schools. Cincy, Okl St, Seton Hall, St. John's, Prov, Auburn (cont'd)— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) May 27, 2014
.@Antoine_Mason also heard from Wake, Maryland, Mizzou, Texas A&M, Memphis, LSU, Tenn, Oregon, Va Tech, BC, UCLA, Nevada, Fordham.— Jeff Goodman (@GoodmanESPN) May 27, 2014
While it's a no-brainer for Seton Hall to reach out, a potential spot for the graduated redshirt senior with one year of immediate eligibility is yet to be found. It looks like Patrik Auda may be moving on to professional ball in Europe with the addition of 2014 power forward Mike Nzei a week ago, and another roster spot for next season could still open up if Desi Rodriguez were to be ruled academically ineligible. Despite the interesting (and potentially reassuring) tidbit from the athletics department that included the text "All six will be freshmen in the fall and will have four years of eligibility." at the bottom of Michael Nzei's release a week ago, I understand the situation to be one that is still very much in the balance.
While highly speculative at this point, a Sterling Gibbs, Isaiah Whitehead, Jaren Sina, Khadeen Carrington, and Antoine Mason rotation at the 1-3 has the potential to be one of the most talented and deepest guard rotations in the country next season.