Janai Crooms Coming Home to Providence Friars
Women’s basketball standout and Rhode Island native Janai Crooms (Cranston, R.I.) has announced that she’ll be returning home to attend Providence College and play for the Friars. The 5-foot, 10-inch guard has signed an athletic aid agreement and will transfer from Michigan State with two years of eligibility remaining. Crooms played her high school basketball at St. Andrew’s (Barrington, R.I.), where she was a four-star recruit and the 36th-ranked player overall in the Class of 2018 by Prospect Nation.
Crooms comes to Providence College with three seasons of high-level NCAA Division I basketball experience under her belt. In addition to her time at Michigan State, Crooms played her first two seasons of college basketball at Ohio State (2018-20).
“Janai is someone that we recruited when we first got to Providence as a staff in 2016 and we are thrilled she will be joining us now,” said Head Coach Jim Crowley. “She is a player with high-level experience and success. Her ability to create for her teammates and for herself will fit very well with how we play. She is a big guard who plays physical and can impact the game on both ends. Janai is a great teammate, a relentless defender and loves to work at the game. She has a great passion for competing that we know will be a very positive impact on our program.”
During her career, she played 83 games and appeared in the starting line-up 41 times. She has averaged 7.1 points, 3.6 rebounds, 2.8 assists and 1.0 steal per game. She is an efficient shooter, hitting 47.3-percent from the floor overall (235-497). From three-point territory, Crooms has shot 31.1-percent during her career (33-106), including a 48-percent performance during the 2019-20 season (20-43). Crooms drained a career-high 27 points against Penn State on Jan. 17, 2019.
Last season at Michigan State, Crooms played 22 games and appeared in the starting line-up 14 times. She averaged 5.1 points, 3.2 rebounds, 3.0 assists and 1.0 steal per game.
At St. Andrew’s, Crooms averaged 12.3 points, 10.2 rebounds and 6.5 assists per game as a senior. In addition to her status as a four-star recruit, the four-time New England All-Star was selected as the Rhode Island Player of the Year for the ALL-USA Girls Basketball Teams. Crooms was nominated as Rhode Island Gatorade Player of the Year and became the first St. Andrew’s female to have her number retired.
Crooms also has unique family ties to Providence College, as she and men’s basketball Head Coach Ed Cooley are cousins.