In the biggest recruiting surprise of the offseason, Iowa State lands 7-foot-1 center Giorgos Tsalmpouris from Greece that’s eligible to play immediately.
Cyclone Fanatic says that Tsalmpouris has committed to the Cyclones, and it was fairly quick process with head coach Fred Hoiberg’s NBA connections.
Apparently Iowa State put a full-court press on Tsalmpouris about a week ago. I am hearing that Fred Hoiberg and Matt Abdelmassih’s NBA scouting buddies tipped Iowa State onto the 17-year old big man.
[Tsalmpouris] can run the floor and shoot but needs to mature physically. That will be his big challenge in year one in the Big 12. The good news is that in his current form, Tsalmpouris will provide extra depth in the frontcourt (remember that Jameel Mckay is not eligible to play until December) and should be able to contribute at least 10-15 quality minutes per game.
The news first broke earlier this Sunday by Travis Hines of the Ames Tribune. He also reminds us that the Cyclones only have scholarship left for the 2014-15 year. Hallice Cooke is still in the cards as he is still deciding where to transfer t.
Tsalmpouris will have all four years of eligibility and will join the team later this summer as he continue to play for the Greek national team.
The only stats we’ve been able to dig up are from the U16 European Championships in 2012, where he played six games with the Greece team. He played just 34 minutes and scored two points. Of course, there’s a better look at him in this scouting video:
He’s not even 18 yet, so fans shouldn’t expect a star athlete on the floor, but the potential that’s there, especially with the size, could change how the Cyclones develop if he continues to get stronger.