Jamie Dixon lost a game Friday night, but he won a different battle - this one on the recruiting trial.
While it’s hard for a coach to think of much of anything after a loss like TCU endured Friday in the semis of the Big 12 Tournament, recruiting never stops, and hopefully the Frogs’ exceptional coach had the chance to smile when he got the news that Shawn Olden would be matriculating to Fort Worth in the fall.
Olden, who played his high school ball at Union High School in Oklahoma, started his collegiate career at Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA, before transferring to New Mexico Junior College midway through his sophomore season, after an injury knocked him off the court. As a freshman, Olden averaged 9.2 points per game in addition to 1.8 assists and a steal, earning a nod as an All-WCC Freshman Team player. He shot 30% from three and pulled down 2.4 rebounds in 28.5 minutes per game. He looked much improved in his sophomore campaign; though his points and minutes were down early, he was shooting 44.8% from three on three attempts per game. But his season ended just nine games in, and he made the decision to transfer to New Mexico Junior College. At NMJC, he was second on the team in scoring with 16.6 points per game, pulled down four boards per contest, and was the Thunderbirds’ best three-point marksman with a 36.6 conversion rate. And he did it all in just 20 minutes per game.
After visiting UCONN, Kansas, and UNLV, Olden chose TCU, who he visited in late January. He will be a nice compliment to Jaylen Fisher, Desmond Bane, and Alex Robinson in the guard rotation, and brings the experience of two seasons of college basketball with him, giving time for some of the young players to develop if needed.
An above average shooter, especially from deep, Olden immediately strengthens an area the Frogs struggled in during their late conference swoon. He can also handle the ball and get to the hoop, and while he’s a little undersized at 6’3”, he’s able to finish at the rim with contact. Another smooth-shooting lefty, he should make an instant-impact for Jamie Dixon’s squad next season, and will have two years of eligibility in Fort Worth.
Check out his collegiate freshman year highlights below and welcome Shawn to the Frog Fam!