For all of two days the math didn’t add up. Now it does.
Cuonzo Martin and his staff signed two players in the fall. Aidan Shaw was the more heralded pickup, ranked in the top 50 players in the country. But Christian Jones was often overlooked. He was an unranked 3-star point guard known mostly for being a good ball handler and a willing passer. Once Martin was let go from his duties as head coach, Shaw requested out of his Letter of Intent to explore his options. Meanwhile, Jones went radio silent.
It’s unknown at this time whether Missouri will still be an option for Jones, but it seems unlikely. The 6’5” East St. Louis guard wasn’t heavily pursued since he locked into Missouri pretty quickly into the offseason last year. The 247sports.com rankings planted Jones in the 288th spot. And while players ranked outside the top 200 seldom make an impact in their freshman season, Jones was looked at more as a longer term bet for the previous coaching staff.
The new staff, led by Dennis Gates, have prioritized bigger guards while at Cleveland State and Florida State. So it would have made some sense to keep Jones around, but with the roster spots at a premium lately it probably made sense for both parties to cut their losses and move on.
Jones requesting out of his Letter of Intent brings the Missouri Scholarship Count for next season back to even. For now.