The Colorado State Rams want to remain relevant and signing big-time talent is a major part of the equation.
High school senior Tanner Lancona may be the next to join the Rams.
According to Lancona’s twitter page, he’s making a visit to Fort Collins on Tuesday, as part of a tour of four different college campuses in the next few weeks.
He already visited St. Louis – a major draw for the big city life and big arena, as many of Lancona’s tweets show – and after CSU he’ll travel to Kansas State and BYU per the Witchita Eagle.
These trips come on the heels of Washington State and the young man mutually agreeing to release Lancona from his letter of intent, in a move that Coug Center of SB Nation said was due to WSU having too many players on scholarship for the upcoming season.
Whatever the reason, Lancona is an extremely talented forward, and the Rams would be lucky to have him.
At 6’9” and 230 pounds, he already possesses a grown man’s body at the age of 18. As a senior, he was an All-Around MVP and averaged 19 points, 11 rebounds, three assists and three blocks per game.
He’s certainly a talented basketball player, showing stellar versatility despite his size. Most shocking is his stroke from outside. He shoots smoothly from 20-plus feet, burying many high school three-pointers in his highlight tape. The lanky youngster can also take players off the dribble and attack the hoop. Lancona moves well without the ball, cutting to the rim and finding easy layups when teammates find him. He also earns many dunks by hanging out on the baseline. On the defensive end, Lancona uses his length to block the ball into the crowd. It’s something CSU has been missing in recent years, besides when Colton Iverson swatted some shots last season.
As for weaknesses, some say he’s not engaged enough on both ends of the court at times, which can be influenced by consistent coaching at the D-I level.
Colorado State continues to reload with remarkable youngsters and Lancona could be the next one.
Last week, the Rams landed 6’7” J.J. Avila, a former Navy star with two years of eligibility remaining. In November, CSU got wiry 6’10” Marcus Holt to commit to transfer from junior college with two years of playing time left as well. Avila is a beast that loves to bang under the boards for rebounds, and Holt can jump out of the gym to go along with his incredibly long arms. As for high schoolers, the Rams will welcome shooting guard Carlton Hurst of Aurora, Colorado and point guard David Cohn of Elmhurst, Illinois. Hurst and Cohn are both very athletic, each can handle the rock, and both know how to get to the rim for high percentage shots.
Currently, Colorado State has two more scholarships to fill, and Lancona – rated a three-star prospect by most outlets – could take one of those spots.
More details on the big man’s decision will come as soon as they’re announced.
Rich Kurtzman is a freelance journalist. You can follow Rich on facebook or twitter for all your CSU Rams news and opinion.