DeShawn Painter was never a full-time starter for
’s basketball team. But his career arc was encouraging, marked by increased scoring, rebounding and playing time in each of his three seasons.
Family concerns, however, are paramount. N.C. State announced this week that Painter is transferring to a school in his native
so that he may be closer to his mother and grandmother, both of whom are ill.
A 6-foot-9, 231-pound power forward from Norfolk’s Maury High and Hargrave Military Academy, Painter would be an immediate asset to any of the area’s four Division I teams:
, Norfolk State, Hampton and
No offense to the others, and with a hat tip to Norfolk State’s
tournament conquest of Missouri, but the most stable and, long-term, successful of those programs is ODU. So that is where
, Painter’s former summer league coach, expects him to land -- NCAA rules require most transfers to sit out a season at their new school, but the association might waive the policy given Painter’s family issues.
The Monarchs lose their top three scorers – Kent Bazemore,
and Trian Iliadis -- but if the NCAA rules Painter eligible immediately, he and 6-8 Nick Wright of Suffolk’s Nansemond River High would give ODU an all-senior, all-757 low-post tandem.
Moreover, Painter could elevate ODU to the
’s top tier, along with presumptive preseason faves
Playing behind the likes ofC.J. Leslieand Richard Howell, Painter was N.C. State’s most productive reserve this season, averaging 6.2 points, 4.3 rebounds and 20 minutes per game. The Wolfpack went 24-13 under first-year coach Mark Gottfried and reached the Sweet 16 of the NCAA tournament before losing to eventual national finalist Kansas.
Painter scored a career-high 19 points against Morehead State, an
-best 18 versus
, and against Princeton he made a game-winning shot from the top of the key with 4.2 seconds remaining.
Painter signed originally with
out of Hargrave in November 2008, but the Gators granted him a release, and five months later he signed with N.C. State and coach Sidney Lowe. As a freshman, he averaged 1.6 points, 1.2 rebounds and 6.5 minutes. A year later, those numbers improved to 4.6, 3.5 and 15.1.
With All-ACC forward Tracy Smith sidelined by injury for 11 games in 2010-11, Painter started and averaged 7.4 points and 5.7 rebounds. He opened his junior season as a starter before returning to a sixth-man role.
“I started off starting, it was good and I played really well,” Painter told N.C. State’s official website. “But for the better of this team, Coach (Gottfried) made a decision that it was better for me to come off the bench and give some energy.
“I just embraced that role and it’s all about sacrificing with this game and that’s what I do for the better of this team. That’s what I did. My role is to get in there and knock down open shots, rebound, play hard, be a great defender and just help my team to win a ball game.”
Painter would be ODU's second recent ACC transfer. Guard Donte Hill, a rising junior from Norfolk Collegiate, joined the Monarchs after a season at
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