Former UGA basketball signees abound in college basketball today

Over the past few years the Georgia Bulldogs Men’s basketball team has had a number of signees transfer to other schools for various reasons.  The five players that have left the program in the last three years – Zac Swansey, DeMario Mayfield, Ebuka Anyaorah, Daniel Miller and Cady Lalanne – would actually make a pretty decent starting five at a mid-major program.

Here is what these guys have been up to since leaving Athens:

Zac Swansey (Senior PG)

Swansey presumably left Georgia in search of playing time after losing the starting point guard job to Dustin Ware during the 2008-2009 season.  He ended up with the Tennessee Tech Golden Eagles where he has excelled at running this team’s offense over the past two seasons.  Swansey, a preseason All-Ohio Valley Second Team selection, is currently averaging 7.7 points, 6 assists and 2.4 steals per game, and his assists and steals numbers have him ranked  17th and 13th nationally in those two categories, respectively.

Demario Mayfield (Sophomore G)

Mayfield played just one year under Coach Mark Fox before deciding to take his talents elsewhere.  The 6’5″ sophomore from Royston, Georgia landed a starting role on the Charlotte 49ers of the Atlantic 10 conference.  This season Mayfield has really come into his own, netting 10.7 points and 6.6 rebounds per contest.

Ebuka Anyaorah (Junior G)

Like Mayfield, EA left Georgia after his freshman season, which was also Coach Fox’s first year as the Bulldogs’ head coach.  Anyaorah played a year of JUCO basketball before signing with the North Carolina Central Eagles, a member of the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.  EA starts for NCCU and he is averaging just under 10 points per game.  His best game of the season thus far came against East Carolina when he went for 25 points; EA also scored 14 and 13 against Wake Forest and North Carolina State, respectively.

Daniel Miller (Sophomore C)

The 6’11” sophomore originally signed with Dennis Felton, but decided to leave in the off-season after Felton had been fired and Fox was given the head coaching job.  Miller transferred to in-state rival Georgia Tech where he is enjoying a nice second season under Coach Brian Gregory, scoring 7.7 points per game to go along with 6.3 boards.  In the Jackets win over the Dawgs in Athens this season, Miller dropped 10 points and snagged 9 rebounds.  He scored most of his points on an array of hook-shots and short jumpers, and he looked more skilled offensively than any big wearing the red and black.

Cady Lalanne (Freshman F-C)

Lalanne was Coach Mark Fox’s first commit as the UGA coach, but due to his test scores and deficient high school course work he was deemed a non-qualifier by the SEC, meaning that he could not attend Georgia.  After sitting out a season, Lalanne – ranked the No. 21 power forward coming out of high school by Rivals.com – signed on with UMASS, joining DeMario Mayfield in the A10.  The 6’9″, 250-pound Lalanne was named to the 2011-2012 A10 Preseason All-Rookie Team, and before suffering a broken foot in January he was certainly living up to the hype.  In his first 14 games of college basketball, Cady was ultra-productive in the paint for the Minutemen, averaging 6.7 points and 5.6 rebounds in just 14.9 minutes of play per game.  Losing Lalanne back in 2010 probably hurt the UGA basketball program more than was expected at the time, since he surely would be the Dawgs’ most significant inside presence this year.

I’m glad that all of the five aforementioned players were able to move on to successful basketball careers after departing the Bulldogs.  However, it is a shame that they weren’t able to develop into the players that they are today in a Georgia uniform.

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3 thoughts on “Former UGA basketball signees abound in college basketball today

  1. I have to admit that the only one of these losses that bothered me at the time was Mayfield whom I knew would develop, had SEC talent, and I wondered whether F ox had run him off. I always kind of liked Swansey, and knew nothing about Lalanne. Miller’s play against us made me wish he still had him (given our own front line). Jim Harrick told me once that, as a coach, you always feel most comfortable with your own guys but you better be able to coach everyone on your roster. I’m sure Mark Fox would say he agrees, although it never seemed too disappointed about losing Felton recruit Mayfield. As I live in Royston and know people who are likely to know Demario, I’ll see what I can determine about his transfer from UGA.

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    1. He struggled a lot that first year, and seemed glued to the bench even when depth would call for him, so maybe there was some issue there Hoops. But like you, I liked the frame and flashes I saw out of Mayfield as a freshman, and wished we would have kept him.

      I wasn’t upset when we lost Miller, but that was a) because I was a fool who focused on his poor Loganville Christian rebounding numbers, and not the keys that made him a rated recruit of height + soft hands, and b) like I assume Fox thought at the time, felt we could recruit over him going forward. Unfortunately that recruiting thing has been the big buggaboo.

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  2. Mayfield and Miller (since Lalanne was academics and not realistic) were bad decisions to let leave. As you say, we don’t have any big that can provide even the modest size and post game Miller provides. And Mayfield, while not a superstar, would be excellent depth on the wings alongside KCP, and could perhaps be the starting 3 allowing Caldwell-Pope to play his more natural SG spot.

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