Malik Beasley’s decision to leave Florida State for the NBA Draft after his freshman season left a glaring hole in the Seminole backcourt that head coach Leonard Hamilton felt the need to fill this spring.
Hamilton already knew he was losing senior guards Devon Bookert and Montay Brandon after the 2015-16 season, which is why he and the Seminole coaching staff had gone out and snagged Trent Forrest and C.J. Walker in the 2016 recruiting class.
Few could have imagined this time a year ago that Beasley would emerge as Florida State’s first-ever one-and-done in basketball. It seemed more likely that McDonald’s All-American Dwayne Bacon, if anybody, would be the one-and-done. And while Bacon played well as a freshman and gave brief consideration to heading off to the pros — he originally planned to test the NBA waters this spring without hiring an agent — he has decided to return to Tallahassee, where he will be an All-ACC candidate heading into his sophomore season.
The Seminoles are also waiting to see what will happen with Xavier Rathan-Mayes, who is currently testing the waters. Rathan-Mayes had a breakthrough freshman season for the Seminoles, though his sophomore season was somewhat down. If Rathan-Mayes doesn’t return, FSU will be even thinner at guard heading into next season.
With at least one extra scholarship for the 2016-17 season available due to Beasley’s departure, as well as a definitive need in the backcourt, Hamilton looked once again to the junior college ranks, where last year he signed in-state standout Benji Bell.
This time around, Hamilton found a much more distant destination to recruit his latest addition — Braian Angola-Rodas of North Idaho College in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.
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