(TORONTO, ON)—Former Carleton Ravens forward Jean Emmanuel Pierre-Charles was in Toronto this past weekend, getting acquainted with one of two teams he’s expected to transfer to in time for 2016-17, after being required to sit out this season.
The three-time national champion was expected to take on a greater role for the Ravens in 2015-16 after the departure of seniors Philip Scrubb, Tommy Scrubb and Victor Raso, but surprised some when he announced his intentions of taking his talents to either Ottawa or Ryerson – who finished 2nd and 3rd after Carleton at the 2015 CIS Final 8 in March.
“Players have a bit more freedom. I like the overall feel; I like the cultures [they’ve built.] Both teams bring something to the table,” says Pierre-Charles, whose 58% shooting tied for third in the OUA last season.
“I wanted to go to a program that obviously can still win. I don’t want to go to a program that’s not going to be good, because [Carleton] did give me the culture of winning, the culture of competing – something that I’ll take for the rest of my life.”
He says he likes the fast-paced play of both potential landing spots, and hopes to make a decision by January at the latest, so he can begin practicing with his new team.
The 6’8” Ottawa native says his interest in the Rams starts with his familiarity with Rams head coach Roy Rana, who is set to return next season after a yearlong sabbatical. While in high school, Pierre-Charles was invited to try out for the Canadian cadet team, coached by Rana from 2009 to 2012. While Pierre-Charles didn’t make the team, the experience led to his inclusion on a 2010 development team that travelled to Italy – which also included future Rams Jordon Gauthier and Jahmal Jones.
“Roy’s a great guy in terms of trust,” says Pierre-Charles. “As a coach, I know I can trust him. That’s probably the main reason I checked out Ryerson right away.”
The civil engineering student says that although he’ll have about a year’s worth of classes once he arrives to his new campus, he’ll spread his studies over the remaining two years of eligibility to focus on basketball.
If he were to choose Ryerson for next season, he’d join a suddenly-loaded frontcourt that would include Juwon Grannum (6’7”), Adam Voll (6’8”), JP Kambola (6’9”) and a potentially-returning Kadeem Green (6’9”).
Photos by Charles Vanegas & Jenelle Seelal
Edited by Drew Ebanks