Tom Crean was bound and determined to bolster the front line for the 2006-2007 season and today snared a commitment from 6'8" JUCO forward Lawrence Trend Blackledge. Blackledge, a teammate of Lance Stemler's at SWIC, is a native of Carbondale, Illinois.
Blackledge's commitment was first reported by Todd Rosiak of the MJS. Here's his profile from the SWIC site, which includes comments from his coach. Also, here's a link to the final stats from SWIC's season.
Blackledge averaged 11ppg, 7 rpg and better than 3bpg last season for SWIC, which went 34-4 and advanced to the National JC Tournament. Blackledge, who goes by his middle name, was an honorable mention All-American last season as well as a team captain for the Blue Storm.
Trend will join Dwight Burke, Mike Kinsella, Jamil Lott and Ousmane Barro in MU's frontcourt rotation next season. As a lanky, athletic player, Blackledge potentially fills a void for MU at the forward positions, especially on defense. None of MU's returning big men would have matched up well with the more athletic combo forwards in the Big East -- players like Jeff Green, Wilson Chandler, Sam Young, and Curtis Sumpter. With Trend in the mix, TC will go to battle with arguably his deepest, most athletic team yet.
Welcome to Marquette, Trend.
Todd Rosiak offers insight into how TC hopes to use Blackledge in the upcoming season -- Trend's versatility and athleticism will be welcome additions to the rotation.
Wednesday, May 03, 2006
Written by TB at 6:35 PM