Carroll, Blagojevic Sign Professional Contracts
WEST HARTFORD, Conn.— A pair of former Hartford men's basketball standouts have recently signed contracts to play professionally. John Carroll inked a contract with BK Nová Hut' Ostrava, while George Blagojevic signed a deal with the Cairns Marlins. A two-time America East All-Conference honoree, Carroll, a 6-8 forward, finished his career as one of the top scorers and rebounders in Hartford's Division I history. The Dublin, Ireland, native is ranked No. 4 in rebounding (644 rebounds) and No. 9 in scoring (1,335 points), while his 493 free throws are good for No. 4 in the record book. In his final season with the Hawks, Carroll averaged 14.6 points and 6.8 rebounds per game to rank among the America East's top-10 in both categories. He earned an undergraduate degree in history before graduating with a Master of Business Administration last May. "John did so much to help elevate our program," said Gallagher. "He is a loyal son of our University, and was an effective leader of our team. We all look forward to closely following John as he begins his professional career." Based in the city of Ostrava, BK Nová Hut' Ostrava is a member of the Czech National Basketball League, the top professional league in the Czech Republic. Blagojevic, who graduated in May with a degree in business management, signed a deal with the Cairns Marlins, a developmental team of the Cairns Taipans, earlier this summer. The Taipans are the powerhouse of Australia's National Basketball League, which is considered to be one of the top leagues in the world. A native of Geelong, Australia, Blagojevic capped off his career by earning a spot on the America East All-Conference Second Team in 2019. He is joined by Carroll in Hartford's 1,000-Point/500-Rebound Club — an elite group that consists of 16 Hawks — after graduating with 1,032 points and 578 rebounds. His career .481 field goal percentage is the sixth-best mark in program history. Blagojevic and Carroll led the Hawks to their most successful two-year run since Hartford transitioned to Division I in 1984-85. In their final two seasons, they helped the Hawks combine for 37 wins, including a school-record 19 in 2017-18.