Howard transfer Cole commits
R.J. Cole, a transfer from Howard University, has committed to UConn.
Cole, who was a threeyear starter for UConn head coach Dan Hurley’s father, Bob Sr., at St. Anthony High in New Jersey, will have to sit out this upcoming season but will have two years of eligibility with the Huskies.
“It was the family atmosphere, the coaching staff and the great tradition (of UConn),” Cole said by phone on Tuesday night. “It’s something I wanted to be a part of.”
Cole was down to UConn, Alabama and Seton Hall. He visited Alabama last week and bumped up his UConn visit from Memorial Day weekend to this week, beginning on Tuesday.
He said Hurley Sr. was an “amazing influence” on him.
“I learned a lot in my three years there,” said Cole, a product of Union, New Jersey whose father, Rob Cole, Jr., was an AAU coach.
Dan Hurley recruited Cole while Hurley was still coaching Rhode Island. A 6-foot-1 scoring point guard, Cole was a prolific scorer at Howard, averaging 23.7 points per game as a freshman and 21.4 this past season as a sophomore. He also doled out 6.1 assists per game as a frosh and 6.4 per contest last season.
Cole said he simply felt it was time to move on from Howard.
UConn has just 12 scholarships available for next season after self-imposing the loss of a scholarship due to violations committed on Kevin Ollie’s watch. The Huskies are still recruiting one more spot for next season — preferably a big man, but UConn is simply looking for the best available talent at this point. The Huskies will take either a player immediately eligible or, like Cole, one who has to sit out a season.
When Cole is eligible to play for UConn in 2020-21, he could be sharing point guard duties with Alterique Gilbert or, if Gilbert is gone, with current incoming freshman Jalen Gaffney. Gaffney can also play the two.
Howard’s RJ Cole takes a foul shot against Georgetown on Dec. 29 in Washington.