Ryan Rhoomes grew up playing basketball in Queens and recently went on television to announce that he was leaving home to play next season for TCU. That scenario would have been unlikely had it not been for the Horned Frogs' future affiliation with the Big East.
TCU will play in the Mountain West Conference next season, but the move to the Big East is allowing the school all the way out in Fort Worth to recruit from a new talent pool. Rhoomes, a 6-foot-9 forward coming out of prep school, whose signing was announced Wednesday, is representative of an East Coast player who the Horned Frogs can now attract.
"Since he is from New York, our move to the Big East Conference really helped to create an attractive opportunity for Ryan," coach Jim Christian said in a statement. "I think his potential, both on and off the floor, is going to be something special for TCU."
Said Rhoomes: "I picked TCU because I saw an opportunity to come in, play early and help the program. I also wanted to play in the Big East, and I thought it would be good to play in the Mountain West for one season as a freshman, get with the program and go from there."
TCU is coming off an 11-22 season and a last-place finish in the Mountain West. Leading scorer Ronnie Moss was suspended during the season, and his return to the team remains unclear.
The Horned Frogs return point guard Hank Thorns and now are bringing in some size with the addition of Rhoomes and 6-foot-8 junior college transfer Adrick McKinney.
They'll especially need the big bodies for when they begin playing in the Big East.
"With the team moving to the Big East, it was just a win-win situation," McKinney said in a statement.