Freshman Samson Froling will forgo his remaining college eligibility and return home to play professional basketball in Australia, Creighton announced Monday.
Froling, who joined the CU program last summer, is now listed on the roster of the Dandenong Rangers, who’re part of an inaugural semi-pro league called NBL1.
“We appreciate his contributions and respect his desire to play professionally,” coach Greg McDermott said in a statement. “We will continue to support him in his future endeavors.”
Froling showed his potential early for the Jays this season, earning double-digit minutes in four of Creighton’s first five games. But his playing time diminished as the season unfolded. He played 13 total minutes during CU’s final seven games. Froling averaged 3.6 points and 1.9 rebounds over 8.9 minutes of action this season.
Ultimately, the 7-footer from Townsville, Australia, decided it was best for him to begin his pro career now.
Two of his older siblings — Keely and Harry — both play professionally in Australia, although Harry plans to enter this summer’s NBA draft. Their sister Alicia just concluded her college career at SMU.
Samson Froling is also going to represent Australia in the under-19 FIBA World Cup in Greece this summer.
Losing Froling will impact Creighton’s depth in the frontcourt next season, and it could end up being a significant blow if Martin Krampelj decides to turn pro as well. Krampelj, who’s recovered from three ACL injuries in his career, will graduate next month but has one year of eligibility remaining.
Sophomore Jacob Epperson is expected to be fully recovered from knee surgery by the time the 2019-20 season begins. Christian Bishop displayed considerable improvement down the stretch in his freshman season, averaging 8.7 points and 6.7 rebounds per game during the Jays’ three-game run in the NIT.
But guards make up the rest of CU’s returning roster.
So the Jays’ coaches, who are evaluating the grad transfer market and the remaining pool of high school seniors, will likely be on the lookout for an additional big man.