East Carolina transfer Tristen Newton commits to UConn men’s basketball team

The first new UConn men’s basketball team addition to the NCAA transfer portal this year is American-made.

Tristen Newton, a 6-foot-5 guard, has played the past three seasons for East Carolina in the American Athletic Conference — UConn’s former stomping ground. In fact, in the first year, Newton dropped 25 points to the Huskies in a game otherwise best known for James Bouknight’s incredible one-handed alley-oop dunk.

Make no mistake, Dan Hurley remembered Newton’s performance and made it one of the Huskies’ top priorities out of the gate. And after an official visit over the weekend, Newton announced Wednesday that he would transfer to UConn.

Newton arrives as UConn loses players to the portal. akok akok, Corey Floyd Jr.., Rahsoul Diggins and Jalen Gaffney are transferring.

Newton is exactly one of the main things UConn was looking for through the portal – a point guard, with size. He has averaged 17.7 points per game for ECU this season while also averaging 5 assists. Newton shot 33.3 percent from 3-point range, a number that could be improved.

“A super, super smart, quiet kid,” said Raphael Chillious, the former UConn assistant who was an assistant at ECU for Newton’s first season. “His game, I would consider it unorthodox, because you look at his shooting, he doesn’t look like the perfect form. But it fits. He’s always had a knack for scoring.

Chillious added that Newton, a native of El Paso, Texas, who was Texas’ leading scorer as a senior at Burges High with 37.4 points per game, is just as good at playing off the ball.

Steve Demeo was an assistant at ECU last season.

“He’s an elite level scorer, an elite level person and I think he’s going to be an elite level player at the major level,” Demeo said of Newton. “A few games later he turned it on and started bombarding shots. If he gets braver and tougher, he has a chance to make it to the top flight.

Defending and ball sharing (104 turnovers last season) are areas where Newton needs to improve.

An excellent student, Newton already had nearly 30 college credits out of high school, according to Chillious. His father is a career soldier.

With RJ Cole’s Decision not to use his extra year of eligibility, and with Gaffney and Diggins deciding to transfer, UConn had no real frontrunners on its roster until Newton’s commitment.

The Huskies are always on the lookout for talented shooters, preferably with a certain height, through the portal or possibly through the Class of 2022 players. The Huskies currently have three scholarships open for next year, but have not decided. to fill all three now or possibly drop off a scholarship or two over the summer, or even leave one empty.


Comments are closed.