When UConn is in need of a clutch shot late in games next season, the Huskies will have several players to call upon.
Jalen Adams has already demonstrated he has the clutch gene, and guys like Alterique Gilbert, Terry Larrier and Christian Vital won’t let the moment get too big for them, either.
And if Antwoine Anderson gets the call, he’ll be more than ready to deliver, as well. In fact, he might boast the best resume on the team when it comes to hitting big shots.
Anderson, who is expected to join the Huskies as a grad transfer next season, was positively Shabazz-like for Fordham the past couple of seasons.
On Feb. 4 in Philadelphia, Anderson hit a 3-pointer at the second overtime buzzer to give the Rams an 86-83 win over St. Joseph’s. A couple of weeks earlier, the 6-foot-1 guard sank a 17-foot game-winner at the overtime buzzer to give Fordham a 69-67 win over VCU.
That one stood out as his personal favorite, as it was Fordham’s first win in seven tries against VCU.
“They’re a power team in the A-10,” Anderson noted. “That’s a team that’s pretty hard to beat, and we finally beat them.”
Anderson also hit a game-winning 3-pointer two seasons ago to beat URI. No doubt, if the clock is ticking down and the ball is in his hands next season, he has the ability to step up.
“I like taking the last shot,” he said. “If you don’t take it, then you’ll never know if it went in or not.”
Anderson, who committed to UConn on April 15, hasn’t been accepted into a grad program at UConn yet, but is expected to be soon. The school has received his signed financial aid agreement. He averaged 11.1 points and had 103 assists and 55 steals last season at Fordham, both second on the tam. He started all 32 games and hit double figures in 18 of them, including a season-high 20 in the win at St. Joe’s.
His role will likely be reduced at UConn, with Adams, Gilbert and Vital already entrenched at guard. But Anderson, who also boasts dynamic athleticism, is positive he can be a big help to the Huskies in many different ways.
“I think I can provide toughness on the defensive end,” he said. “On offense, I’ll be able to make plays for myself and my teammates.”
Anderson, who sat out his freshman season as a partial-qualifier (thus making him eligible to be a grad transfer), added that he can bring experience and leadership to the team.
“Talking to the guys on the team, they’re all pretty hungry,” he said. “They want to make a jump up.”
A Rochester, New York native, Anderson knows Larrier from when the latter played at VCU. He met the rest of his teammates on a visit a couple of weekends ago and chose UConn over NC State, Seton Hall, Georgia Tech and several other suitors because of “the environment, the coach is family-oriented, and the ability to compete at another level.”