On Friday afternoon, Penn State got some welcome news as Virginia Tech transfer Satchel Pierce opted to commit to the program. It was a pickup that could have ramifications for Penn State's upcoming season and during the coming years as Pat Chambers tries to get the Nittany Lions back on track.
During his career with Virginia Tech, Pierce appeared in 51 games, scored 131 points, and made 100 rebounds. Unfortunately, he was never able to crack the rotation consistently and averaged an underwhelming 6.2 minutes, 1.6 points, and 1.3 rebounds overall last season.
However, even with this uninspiring stats, he does have one number that looks impressive, which is his height. Pierce is listed at an impressive 7-0 and 255 pounds and undeniably has the size to play upfront in the Big Ten. He still has to prove that he can actually produce on the court, but he at least has the raw size to play the position.
For Penn State, this is a pretty significant pickup. As mentioned, there are going to be a lot of questions about when and if Pierce can ever put it all together on the court, but with the program's impressive incoming recruiting class and young players like Joe Hampton and Julian Moore upfront, Pierce could be the final piece necessary to put together a lineup that can compete in the Big Ten and for an NCAA Tournament bid.
Pierce will have to sit out the upcoming season due to NCAA transfer rules, but if he can produce during the 2016-17 season, the Nittany Lions could have a great lineup. In fact, the team could very well be starting some combination of Tony Carr, Shep Garner, and Josh Reaves in the backcourt and Joe Hampton and Pierce upfront. That's absolutely enough talent to do some damage on the court.
It will be interesting to watch how Pierce fits in next season with Penn State, but given what's set to be in place around him, this looks like a big pickup for the Nittany Lions.