Ole Miss guard Polynice interested in USF
A new name has surfaced as a potential late addition for USF's 2010-11 men's basketball team, as Eniel Polynice, a 6-foot-5 combo guard from Sarasota who started 64 games in three seasons at Mississippi, said Monday that he is considering transferring to play at USF this coming season.
"It's close to home, and there's a good chance of me going there," said Polynice, who will graduate from Ole Miss this summer and can then transfer and play immediately for his final season. "I could come in and compete for playing time and just help them out."
Polynice, 21, submitted his name as an early-entry candidate for the NBA draft last month, then withdrew it on Saturday, the deadline for underclassmen to pull their names out of the draft pool. He has a full release from Ole Miss, and while he hasn't spoken with USF coach Stan Heath, he intends to visit the Bulls next week before he returns for summer classes in Oxford.
"We're looking at hopefully South Florida," said Derrick Kirce, his coach at Sarasota's Booker High, who has spoken to Heath about Polynice. "I think South Florida would give him an opportunity to come in and have a legitimate shot at playing and getting quality minutes."
Kirce said he's also talked to DePaul and California about Polynice, but said the desire to get closer to home makes USF an ideal place for Polynice to play next season.
Polynice primarily worked as a point guard last year, leading Ole Miss in assists (3.9 per game) and averaged 8.8 points. He was suspended from the team for two games late in the season, then played in a limited capacity in the Postseason NIT, scoring six points in four games. He led Booker to a state championship in 2006 and was MVP at the state final four.
Heath coached against Polynice his final year at Arkansas, and while Polynice has not been a consistent perimeter shooter, he once went 7-for-11 on 3-pointers his sophomore year against South Alabama as part of a 28-point game. With the departure of seniors Chris Howard and Mike Mercer and Dominique Jones' departure to the NBA draft, Heath is lacking experienced guards, and Polynice would answer that need.
USF has a scholarship available from Jones' departure, and Polynice would be the fifth guard to join the Bulls this fall, along with junior college guards Shedrick Haynes, Jawanza Poland and Hugh Robertson and freshman LaVonte Dority.