Anthony Crater has had a trying collegiate career. He transferred from Ohio State after failing a drug test, and then during his redshirt year with the Bulls failed another one.
This second failed drug test earned him a suspension by USF head coach Stan Heath, that when combined with his redshirt overlap led to Crater playing in only 19 of the Bulls' 33 games this season.
Crater was also arrested with former Bull Mike Mercer on drug charges earlier in 2009.This arrest earned him a temporary dismissal from the team. These type of incidents have many wondering if he will be ready to step up as a leader on this team.
He was a force on defense during those 19 games, but will need to step up his offensive prowess next season. Chris Howard has graduated leaving Crater as the team's best option at point guard. With this title comes responsibility, and that is something Crater has lacked thus far in his career.
Howard was a menace to Big East teams on both sides of the court. His 10 points and four assists a game had a huge impact on the Bulls success this season. His 23 steals also held up offenses at the perimeter.
Anthony Crater is going to have to mimic Howard in almost every way. Howard was a leader on and off the court. Howard has just finished a degree in communications and is starting towards a criminology degree.
Crater shows promise; in his limited action he has been able to become an effective sixth man for the Bulls. His up close and personal defense can be felt quickly by opposing point guards. He has great quickness and make-up speed if beaten on the perimeter.
Crater has the skills on the court to be a successful player for USF. What is in question is his off the court actions. Has his attitude changed in this last half of the season, or is head coach Stan Heath sweating out this offseason in hopes his future point guard stays clean? Time will tell, but for Crater and USF’s sake I hope this is a quiet offseason for the Bulls.