FSU basketball fans have waited for the debut of guard Primo Spears. Everyone has been guessing when the transfer would make his debut in his Garnet and Gold uniform. Luckily, Spears was able to suit up for Florida State as he made his debut in Saturday night’s contest against SMU.
What was the reason behind Spears’ inability to suit up through the first eight games? Well, the NCAA had a rule that prevented two-time transfers from playing for a new program. Luckily, a judge issued a 14-day restraining order that allowed all transfers to play through the spring season. Officially adding Primo Spears to the rotation opens up several things for head coach Leonard Hamilton and the Seminoles.
“Primo has some skills that you can’t teach,” Coach Hamilton said about Primo. “He’s awfully quick, loves to play defense, has a good pull-up jumper, a good finisher at the basket, and a good three-point shooter.” All of those words are accurate when analyzing Spears’ game. During his one season at Georgetown, he was an elite all-around scorer who could keep the defense on their heels with the ability to play inside and out. Spears averaged 16 points per game along with 5.3 assists and 1.1 steals last season. He had several scoring outbursts that included a 37-point performance in a loss against Xavier.
There could be several reasons behind Spears entering the transfer portal after one season at Georgetown. One reason could be due to the departure of head coach Patrick Ewing after finishing with a 7-25 record. Another could be due to Spears’ relationship with associate head coach, Kevin Nickleberry, who recently joined Leonard Hamilton’s coaching staff. Regardless of the reason, Spears believed it was time for a change in scenery once again. Joining Florida State allowed him to join a storied program that likes to prioritize winning.
Truth be told, the Seminoles need a number one scoring option offensively. They’re still missing a guy who can play under pressure and put a team on their back. Many expected the Noles’ number one scoring option to be either Jamir Watkins or Darin Green Jr. While the two wing players have had their shining moments it hasn’t been consistent. Primo Spears is a player who can set the tone offensively for Florida State. He may not be the top scoring option but could provide baskets when the team needs them most.
Spears scored 10 points on 2/14 shooting in his Seminoles debut. While his shooting numbers were bad, he was still trying to find a feel on the court with his new team. Coach Hamilton did a good job of observing Spears and monitoring his playing time. He tried to play him with different lineups to see which one he could be most effective in. Despite Spears’ poor shooting on offense, he was able to show good signs on defense with his energy and ability to get into passing lanes.
Spears will continue to improve as the season progresses. Fans shouldn’t expect another 2/14 shooting performance from him. He’s a player who’s going to complement the rest of his team perfectly with his versatility on offense. Spears’ ability to draw attention from the defense will lead to easy opportunities on offense for players like Watkins, Green Jr, Baba Miller, etc. As the Noles are without players like Cam’Ron Fletcher and Cam Corhen, it’s great to have a healthy player on the court who can make just as big of an impact.
The Seminoles’ next game takes place Tuesday night against North Alabama. It will be their second game at home as they continue their seven-game home stand heading into the new calendar year.