Kansas State lost one of its best shooting guards in school history this year with the graduation of standout Rodney McGruder. Replacing him became more difficult with the announcement that Michael Orris would transfer to Northern Illinois at the conclusion of the semester. However, the task was somewhat simplified this weekend when Justin Edwards announced he would transfer from Maine to Kansas State.
Edwards will provide a boost to a team in need of players and struggling to fill all of its scholarships. Standing at 6’3″, the shooting guard led the America East conference in scoring with 16.7 points per game. He also contributed 5.2 rebounds and 3.4 assists to the Maine Black Bears as a sophomore. Because he is transferring from another Division I NCAA school, he will be forced to sit out the 2013-14 season.
Edwards chose K-State after considering Creighton, Iowa State, and St. Louis. During his time at Maine the team went 23-36 and 12-20 in league play. And although Maine may have reminded him of his Canadian homeland, it was an open secret that he held ambitions of playing at a higher level. A native of Whitby, Ontario, Edwards did not receive a lot of attention from the nation’s premier programs. However, his achievements over the past two years and interest in playing for a BCS school piqued the interest of multiple schools.
As a freshman, Edwards netted 13.9 points to go along with 5.6 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.4 steals per game. His experience and talents will be a welcome component to a Bruce Weber team seeking to replace not only its graduating seniors, but transfers Orris, Angel Rodriguez, and Adrian Diaz. Although he will not be playing this season, his leadership in practice and eventual on-court contributions starting in 2014-15 make this an excellent addition to the team.