#12 - TyShwan Edmondson
2008-2009 Class: Freshman
Age/ DOB: 19/ September 28, 1989
Home: Hopkinsville, KY
After losing out on a class of impact players in 2008 - most notably Sylven Landesberg, who chose Virginia over St. John's - and after having a pair of players transfer, the staff of St. John's men's basketball scrambled for a sleeper guard to fill out the 2008 class and provide a semblance of depth behind Malik Boothe.
The staff located Quincy Roberts out of PA, a former Miami commit and TyShwan Edmondson. The competition for his services was Georgetown College (KY), Eastern and Western Kentucky, Morehead State... not notable schools outside of W. Kentucky. Hopes weren't high that he would make a strong impact, but Edmondson was billed as a combo guard who could take some minutes at the point guard position.
Other players who have looked out of place skill-wise in the league (Mike Cavataio and Ricky Torres come to mind) have had moments that hint at possible rotation potential. TyShwan's best moments were a run that added up to 16 minutes against DePaul and a 20-minute performance against Miami just after Malik Boothe had injured his hand. That Miami game was a throttling from end to end; the DePaul game was a blowout win; and the negatives from Edmondson's other games easily negate that performance. Or maybe my standards are too high; South Florida's Justin Leemow was statistically similar in 5 more minutes per game, though a far better passer and ballhandler.
Unlike The Bulls' Leemow, there was a serious lack of aggressiveness and/ or instinct in Edmondson's game. For a guy whose highlights featured his dribble and hops, he was unwilling to probe. For a long player, he didn't generate many steals.
His lack of strength meant he couldn't defend Big East players closely. He didn't seem able to get many shots off, and when he did, those shots were off-target. And even the lack of strength does not explain the inability to find assists, even with a team that was a poor-shooting squad. And the turnover rate in conference was simply terrible. The game simply seemed too fast for the freshman.
How much of that is the player's ability? How much is it the ability of the staff to coach a player up? It seems bizarre that the staff would have chosen to bring this player from Kentucky when a low-level player from New York City might have done as well, with more toughness and less fear. Yes, fear; Edmondson looked panicked at times, out of sorts, and completely overwhelmed by the league.
He transferred out of the program, and we do not know to where; this blog wishes him luck. He has speed and quickness and length, and may be more suited to the 2-guard position instead of on the ball. I would not be surprised to see him - at a low-Division I school - become a stat-sheet stuffer, once he builds his confidence. I would wager that Edmondson will be a low-percentage shooting player, but raw players in need of weight training can become solid ballers - look at Cedric Jackson.