Apparently Travis Steele wasn’t kidding when he said he was immediately going recruiting after yesterday’s whirlwind of introductions and press conferences. Steele’s first act as head coach was inking the NCAA Division II player of the year, Zach Hankins, to a graduate transfer. Hankins played his first four years at Ferris State in Michigan after going to high school in Charlevoix and will be immediately eligible for Xavier.
Hankins is a 6-11, 255 back to the basket center who averaged 15.1/9.7/1.5 and 3.3 blocks on .630/.000/.711 shooting this year. In Ferris State’s lone game this year against a DI team, an 80-72 loss to Michigan State, Hankins went for 12/8/0 with two blocks. Per Evan Daniels Hankins said “When my coach and I reached out to a few specific teams, they were all in right away and Steele continued to pursue me when (Chris) Mack left. They lost two of their main bigs and a decent amount of offense with Bluiett and Macura leaving. I can help fill some of those missing shots and be a good defensive presence at the other end.”
On Hankins Twitter he further elaborated:
Hankins was a DI level talent in his junior year of high school before suffering back to back breaks in his foot. Upon rehabbing his injury and rebuilding his game, he dominated DII this year and led his one loss squad to the national championship. With Sean O’Mara leaving a gaping hole in the middle for the Musketeers, Coach Steele clearly made bringing in a skilled big man his top priority. In Hankins, he’s found just that.