The High Point University men’s basketball team has added guard Brian Richardson, head coach Scott Cherry announced on Thursday. Richardson is transferring to HPU from the University of South Carolina and will be eligible for the 2014-15 season.
“Brian played and performed at the SEC level and he has great character,” said Cherry. “We recruited him out of high school when I first got the job here so we had a lot of background with him. We’re looking forward to him coming in and helping in practice this year and then to stepping into an immediate role to help fill the scoring void when Allan Chaney graduates.”
Richardson’s best season at South Carolina came in 2012-13 when he averaged 7.5 points, 2.2 rebounds and 1.0 assists in 31 games (nine starts). He shot 39.9 percent (81-for-203) from the floor, 38.2 percent (42-for-110) from three-point range and 73.2 percent (30-for-41) from the free-throw line.
Richardson scored 20 points in two games last season, a 56-54 road loss to Mississippi State in which he hit five three-pointers and a 75-54 win over Arkansas. He also scored 17 points against Tennessee. A veteran of 86 collegiate games with the Gamecocks, Richardson averaged 5.7 points while shooting 35.6 percent from the floor and 33.2 percent from three-point range over three seasons.
“Brian is a wing and is a dual threat as a scorer – he can shoot with great range and can put the ball on the ground and score off the bounce,” said Cherry. “He’s long, athletic and can defend his position. A player of Brian’s caliber from the SEC is a great addition for us. He played for a great high school program and a tremendous college program so he has experience that can only help the guys around him.”
As a freshman at South Carolina, Richardson saw action in all 30 contests with 24 starts, averaging 5.9 points, 1.6 rebounds, 0.5 assists and 0.7 steals.
Originally from Wilson, N.C., Richardson attended the Greenfield School and was rated a three-star prospect in the class of 2010. He was named Coastal Plains Conference Player of the Year and earned first-team All-State honors as a senior, when he averaged 19.0 points, 6.0 rebounds, 6.0 assists and shot 40 percent from beyond the arc. As a junior, Richardson led his squad to the 1A NCISA Final Four and averaged 22.0 points, five assists and six rebounds.
High Point will also add three freshmen as part of the incoming class for 2013-14. The four recruits will join 11 returners who accounted for 79 percent of scoring and 63 percent of rebounding for the 2013-14 season. Rising sophomore John Brown was an All-Big South first-team selection, graduate student Allan Chaney was named to the All-Big South second team and Adam Weary was named to the All-Freshman team.
The Panthers went 17-14 overall and 12-4 in Big South play this season, winning the conference’s North Division title and setting a team record for Big South wins. HPU participated in the CollegeInsider.com Tournament, the program’s first postseason appearance since moving up to NCAA Div. I in 1999-2000.