Questions Abound For Rutgers Basketball

Rich Schultz

Despite practice being less than a month away, the roster is still not settled.

When a new coach takes over a team, fans start out optimistic.  They can't wait to see what the new coach will bring to the team, how they'll play, and how they'll recruit.  This excitement comes with Eddie Jordan, and early in his tenure, he ran with it.  He filled the team with some talent and retained some of the most exciting pieces on the team as well.

But now that September has rolled around, and practice is less than a month away, this Rutgers team is still full of questions.

Who is eligible?

By this point, everyone has has heard Kerwin Okoro was denied his waiver. After the outcry by the media, it seems likely the decision will be turned over in appeal (likely, but not 100%--it is the NCAA, after all).  But no one seems sure when the appeal decision will come down.

Meanwhile, Rutgers is still waiting on J.J. Moore's transfer waiver decision as well.  Moore is a key piece to this year's team, and the quicker the decision, the easier it will be for Jordan to play his style of play this season.

Finally, Junior Etou's academic eligibility is still in question.  Etou has to pass through the NCAA Clearinghouse, and still no decision has been made.  If this article on Tyler Roberson is to be believed, time is ticking before Etou is no longer bound by his Letter of Intent.

If all three decisions go in Rutgers favor, Jordan will have a deep, talented and veteran team on his hands.  If not, Rutgers will have only 9 scholarship players available--including former walk-on Logan Kelley.

Style of Play

Eddie Jordan is a known proponent of the Princeton offense.  However, in a recent ESPN article, Jordan said he coaches to his team.

Since it appears, Jordan thinks the Princeton style may not fit this team, how will this Rutgers team play?  If Moore and the aforementioned company are not eligible, Rutgers is going to need to get easy baskets.  That means steals, rebounds and fast breaks.  Exactly the style of play that fits Myles MackJerome Seagears, though, may succeed better in a structured half court offense.

What will Jordan play?  He might not even know yet.

Recruiting

For a while, Jordan had been tied to several high ranking recruits with his last remaining scholarship for 2014.  If JJ Moore was eligible, that scholarship would have been available.  Since then, several of those players have either dropped Rutgers from their list, or simply chose others teams.  Did the Moore eligibility issue come into play there?  If so, this is something that can hurt Jordan beyond the coming season.

RAC Renovations

Another long term question.  While the old scoreboard has been torn down, and the new one is being installed as we speak, there hasn't been much in the way of updates on further RAC Renovations.  While it won't affect this year's team either way, it is something that will come into play in recruiting and joining the Big Ten.  Rutgers must step up its facilities game to stand any chance in the Big Ten.

These questions need to be resolved soon (especially the first 3).  But it is still a better picture overall, than the team was in late April

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