By Harry Allison
Villanova’s defending national champs are busy re-stocking the cupboard that is now missing NBA-ers Jalen Brunson, Donte DiVincenzo, Omari Spellman and Mikal Bridges:
Incoming freshman forward Saddiq Bey (Washington, D.C.) and graduate transfer guard Joe Cremo (Scotia, N.Y./University of Albany) are now set for the 2018-19 season, which gets underway Nov. 6 vs. Morgan State.
Bey is a graduate of Sidwell Friends School, which also is the alma mater of Villanova 2017 consensus All-American and Julius Erving Award winner Josh Hart. In 2017-18, The 6-7 Bey averaged 21.2 points and 8.2 rebounds per outing. As a junior he averaged 14.2 points per game.
“We were really excited to add a player of Saddiq’s caliber so late in the recruiting calendar,” Villanova head coach Jay Wright said in a statement. “Saddiq is a highly skilled, efficient and intelligent basketball player. We’re thrilled to welcome him to Villanova.”
Cremo (above), a 6-4 standout at the University of Albany for the past three seasons, averaged 17.8 points, 4.1 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game in 2017-18. He also converted 45.8 percent of his attempts from beyond the 3-point arc last season.
“Joe is a proven winner and scorer at the collegiate level whose experience will be an asset to our young team this season,” Wright said. “His maturity and character make him a perfect addition.”
Villanova returns two senior starters – Phil Booth and Eric Paschall – to a unit that finished 36-4 and claimed its second NCAA national championship in the past three seasons in 2017-18.