The need for another big man in the 2015 recruiting class has been well documented across Miner Rush, and today UTEP offered a seven footer that can make an immediate impact next season.
Per JucoRecruiting.com's Brad Winton, UTEP has offered 7'0 JUCO center Conor Clifford who is currently playing at Saddleback Community College this season.
UTEP has offered Conor Clifford (7'0/C/2015) of Saddleback College (CA).— Brad Winton (@JucoRecruiting) January 8, 2015
Clifford originally signed with UC-Irvine in 2012 where he saw action in 32 games during the 2012-13 season, including a double-double against Pacifica, though averaged 7.8 minutes per game for the season.
This season Clifford leads Saddleback in scoring, averaging 15 points per game and also averages close to seven rebounds per game. The previous season before transferring to Saddleback, Clifford took a red-shirt after his freshman year at UC-Irvine then transferred last May.
He has collected five double-doubles this season, is shooting 64 percent from the field, and has been an integral part in Saddleback's 18-1 record and a number one ranking in the California Community College Men's Basketball Coaches Association poll.
Out of high school, he averaged 15 points, and nine rebounds his senior year while shooting 67 percent, and will have two years of eligibility if he chooses the Miners.
Listed at 280 pounds, Clifford can replace the graduating muscle and minutes of Cedrick Lang, and will be a nice compliment alongside fellow seven footer Matt Willms as both will be on track to play two seasons together in the paint.
UTEP coaches were out scouting him at a high-end JUCO tournament a few weeks ago, and today the news of his offer hit the Twittersphere.
Obviously time will tell if Clifford makes UTEP home, but no denying the impact the seven-footer could bring to the table next season, hopes and #PicksUps.