May 16, 2013, 4:31 PM EST
The 2012-13 season was a successful one for first-year Canisius head coach Jim Baron, who managed to win 20 games and lead the Golden Griffins to their first postseason appearance since then-head coach John Beilein led the program to the NCAA tournament in 1996.
Coach Baron will welcome back son Billy for his senior campaign but there are three guards who have exhausted their eligibility: Harold Washington (13.8 ppg), Isaac Sosa (11.6 ppg) and Alshawn Hymes (7.1 ppg).
That makes the report that former Stetson guard Chris Perez has decided to transfer to Canisius an important development for the Golden Griffins. The news was first reported by Jeff Goodman of CBSSports.com.
Perez averaged 15.1 points and 4.6 rebounds per contest for the Hatters last season, shooting 48.6% from the field. A native of the Dominican Republic, Perez earned second team All-Atlantic Sun honors in 2012-13.
While he isn’t the prolific perimeter shooter that Billy Baron is, Perez (31.1% 3PT) will certainly help the Griffs offensively as they look to account for the departures noted above.
In addition to Perez, Canisius has also picked up commitments from junior college guard Jeremiah Williams and freshmen Zack Lewis and Kassius Robertson. Williams and Lewis have both signed a National Letter of Intent.
The Golden Griffins finished two games behind rival Niagara last season. With the coaching (and roster) changes at Niagara and NCAA tournament participant Iona losing MAAC Player of the Year Lamont Jones, can Coach Baron’s team play an even bigger role in the conference title race this season?
If Perez can have the impact he’s capable of, that would not be an unrealistic expectation.
Raphielle can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.
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