UAlbany Taps Into Aussie Pipeline Again
If it ain't broke, don't fix it. That could be a mantra for the University at Albany men's basketball team when it comes to bringing kids from Australia to Albany, N.Y. to play for head coach Will Brown and the Great Danes. Not only has the Danes' coaching staff been able to secure commitments from players from Down Under, but nearly every Aussie that has made the 10,000 mile trip over the years has made a lasting impact on the UA program. Here's a quick list of the four players that have blossomed in purple and gold in the last six years.
- Luke Devlin (Sydney) - All America East Rookie, 3x Captain, played in 129 career games
- Sam Rowley (Sydney) - 2x All Conference, 756 rebounds (1st in D-1 era), 1,194 pts (5th all time scorer in D-1 era)
- Peter Hooley (Adelaide) - 3x All Conference, 1,519 pts (4th in D-1 era), 336 assists (3rd in D-1 era)
- Mike Rowley (Sydney) - Soon to be senior, started all 33 games as a junior. 8ppg, 6.5rpg.
Not only have these players enjoyed personal success, but each of these Australians have won America East championships and played in the NCAA tournament.
And the pipeline continues to flow. This off season UAlbany has secured commitments from two more players from Australia.
In July, Brent Hank, a 6'10" center from Port Lincoln, South Australia, informed the coaching staff that he'll be a Great Dane following his high school graduation in 2017. Hank is a tough 5-man that pounds the glass and is a presence defensively. At moments when I watched his highlights online he reminded me of 2014 graduate Jon Puk.
Then came the commitment of Adam Lulka in August. Lulka, a 6'8'' forward from near Sydney, is also a member of the 2017 graduation class and will join the team next year. Keep your eye out for this kid. Albany was able to win the commitment of Lulka over other schools such as San Diego, Bradley, and UC Riverside. It's unfair to put lofty projections on kids before they ever step on campus, but Lulka looks like the real thing. He's a hard nosed kid who does terrific work around the basket with both hands and is deceptively athletic.
Most recently, the Danes secured a third commitment from yet another member of the 2017 class. Cameron Healy, a talented combo guard from near Sydney, is the latest to join the Aussie lineage at UAlbany. He plays his prep ball at Montverde Academy in Florida, the same school who produced Ben Simmons, Joel Embiid, and D'Angelo Russell. Healy is 6'2", has a knock down shot, and can really create (as you'll see in his highlights below). There's no wonder Healy drew interest from Stanford, Columbia, Pepperdine, Princeton, Denver and Cal Poly. An interesting note is that Healy's older brother Kai started 22 games at Santa Clara this past year. Don't be surprised if we're saying the same thing about Cameron at UAlbany in 2018 and beyond.
Here are highlight videos of the future Danes stacked on top of one another with Hank on top, and Lulka in the middle, and Healy below.