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Pitt Men’s Basketball Player Preview: Nelly Cummings

Former Lincoln Park star returns home

NCAA Basketball: ACC Basketball Tipoff Jim Dedmon-USA TODAY Sports

Position: G

Height: 6’0”

Year: Graduate

Last Season (Colgate): 14.7 ppg, 3.4 apg, 36.0 3P%

Career Highs: Points 26 (12/06/21 vs Columbia), Rebounds 8 (1/28/21 @ Boston U), Assists 9 (2/2/22 vs Bucknell), Steals 5 (11/20/17 vs Lake Erie) Free Throws Made 9 (2x) Field Goals Made 9 (2x), Three Pointers Made 6 (2x)

After a stellar prep career, Cummings played one season at Bowling Green before suiting up for Colgate the last three seasons.

Nelly Cummings is a tough competitor who seems to play his best against big opponents. Looking up his stats in 2 NCAA Tournament games and other games against P5 competition fits that description. His quickness allows him to get into middle of the lane against most defenders. Once there he has a decent floater or is able to slip a pass to an open big if he’s doubled.

Rewatching highlights of the Wisconsin Colgate tournament game, Cummings controls the first 5 minutes of the game. He hit a couple floaters (one pictured above), knocked down a step-back three, and made a nice pass for a layup. He had fourteen points at the break as Colgate and Wisconsin were tied at 28. The second half was a different story.

I want to draw attention to the second clip for two reasons. One, it was a nice finish against a big (I’m like 50/50 on there being a foul there. Sometimes that play is and sometimes it’s not). And two, that was Cummings’ only field goal of the second half until the closing seconds. I have concerns that Cummings can maintain his high energy in the second half against P5 opponents.

Moving on to Cummings’ shooting. He shot 36% from three (ironically this was only good for 5th on Colgate who was 2nd nationally as a team in 3P%), which in the barren wasteland that is Pitt’s outside shooting for the last however many years, seems impressive. I worry that we could be looking at a Ryan Murphy situation (40% 3 at Charlotte, 33.1% 3 at Pitt) where his shooting falls off considerably in the ACC.

Cummings is an intelligent player who should provide plenty of highlights for Pitt this season, however fans should not expect similar offensive production in the move from Patriot League to ACC.