I didn't go to community college, but I know the stigma. Those who don't get into a four-year college right away aren't as bright or as diligent. We know this isn't necessarily the case, but in the basketball world normally there is a reason that kept them out of going right to the NCAA right out of high school. Kent State took a calculated risk by bringing in so many JC and CC players, including one player on his second chance, hoping the team chemistry worked and allowed the depleted roster to reload and contend.
It worked; they won the MAC regular season title and cashed in on a second chance of their own by making it to the NIT quarterfinals.
The biggest flier was on Michael Porrini. Not only was he coming off an ACL injury, but he was dismissed from the team for violating team rules. After rehabbing his knee and playing at Gulf Coast C.C., Ford recruited Porrini to Kent State and all he did was win MAC Defensive Player of the Year. Porrini had said in numerous interviews that he chose to wear No. 2 because this was his second chance in basketball, essentially embracing his scarlet number in life.
The other junior/community college players from last year:
Guyton was one of the Golden Flashes' most lethal 3-point shotters, and Manns was a rebounder/shotblocker to complement Player of the Year Justin Greene under the basket. Back in November I even predicted a down year just because it seemed like so much had to click in unison for a dominant team to come together, but that shows you how much I know. The risk was worth it, and the reward for Geno Ford was a new job at Bradley University, with a higher paycheck.