First off, the announcement:
Iowa transfer Jack Nunge seems to fit the bill for exactly what Xavier needs. He's a 6-11, 245 post man with at least two years of eligibility left who is not at all afraid to mix things up defensively and on the glass. In that, he represents the perfect foil to Xavier’s more finesse oriented forward Zach Freemantle.
The question with Nunge is his availability. After playing as a freshman, Nunge elected to redshirt for a season. When he returned in what would be the Covid-canceled season he got off to great start for five games before tearing his ACL. This season he missed the first two games due to “family tragedy” before playing 22 at a high level. In a game on February 25th, a day after Xavier got crushed by Providence, Nunge planted his right leg and felt a twinge of pain in his knee. An MRI revealed a torn meniscus that required surgery and ended his season.
When Nunge played this season he was a more than capable backup for Luka Garza. In 16 minutes per contest he averaged 7.1/5.3/1.3 and threw in a block for good measure. His shooting line was equally accomplished at .445/.829/.298. Nunge’s rate stats were even more impressive. When he was on the court he grabbed defensive rebounds at a 20% rate and offensive rebounds at a 15.2% rate. He blocked 5.6% of opponent’s shot attempts, had an excellent (for a big man) 14.5% assist rate and only a 13.5% turnover rate. He used possessions well, found his shots, and played like a complete big man. He’s everything that Xavier needed to add, all in one player.
He just has to stay healthy.