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Basketball

VIDEO: Cyclones add 7-1 European prospect to 2014 class

This sure doesn’t happen very often.

Iowa State received a 2014 basketball commitment on Sunday morning. His name is Giorgos Tsalmpouris, a 7-foot-1 center out of Greece. Tsalmpouris, who a source says will officially visit Iowa State in June, will play for the Greek national team this summer before joining the Cyclones in Ames later on this summer.

Tsalmpouris will have four years of eligibility at Iowa State.

How did all of this go down? Well, pretty quickly, actually. 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. 

What to expect?

Great question. It is always hard to gauge how a high school 7-footer will fare at the next level. That becomes even more difficult when the prospect comes over to the United State via Europe. Not only is there a major change in the way that the game of basketball is played, there is the natural cultural adjustment as well.

What kind of player is Tsalmpouris? See for yourself by viewing these videos found on YouTube (below). 

Scouting report 

Tsalmpouris is a prototypical European prospect. He’s big. He 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.

Up next

Iowa State now only has one scholarship remaining for the 2014-15 season. That offer is still out to Oregon State transfer Hallice Cooke, who visited St. Joseph’s this weekend. Cooke is also scheduled to visit Dayton next weekend.  

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