Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Portland State and Sacramento State Sign Some Recruits

Recruits are starting to sign with schools now, and Sacramento State and Portland State both announced their recruiting classes.

In total, Sac State has five recruits signed (four in the current signing period, one early), and really, it looks like a very strong class.

The signees, and a quick blurb about them:

- Guard Marcus Graves - “Marcus is a highly skilled player who is a very good shooter and play maker,” Katz said. “He has a similar game to (current Hornet guard) Dylan Garrity in that he is a shooter that can drive. Marcus’ eyes are always up in the open court and in the on-ball, and he has a very good feel and understanding for the game of basketball.”

- Center James Herrick - “James is a big, strong and powerful post player,” Katz said. “He has very good hands, and is a big man that can shoot and pass the ball. He has a tremendous amount of upside, and gives us a solid player at the 5 spot that will develop and get better.”

- Forward Mason Stuteville (brother of current Hornet Eric Stuteville) - “Mason is a skilled big man with a powerful body who can pass, shoot and has good hands,” Katz said. “When we signed his brother, we said Eric’s best days were ahead of him, and I truly believe that with Mason as well. He can post, he can drive the lane, and he can shoot it. We like his versatility, and he will provide matchup problems for our opponents.”

- Guard Jiday Ugbaja - “Jiday is an athletic guard with power and explosiveness,” Katz said. “He’s 5-foot-10 and 185 pounds, and with a year or two of weight training, he will look like an NFL running back. He is a driver that can shoot, and he fits the mould of what we look for in our perimeter players as guys that can dribble, pass and shoot.”

- Forward Justin Strings - "Justin has big shoulders, big hands, long arms, a big chest and he will eventually develop a very powerful body," Katz said. "He is one of those players that flew under the radar, but is extremely skilled and has the potential to become a very good player at the collegiate level. He is versatile in that he can play in the post and on the perimeter, and its not a stretch to say his ball-handling skills are the equivalent to most shooting guards."

Just as impressive, all five guys are freshmen, which is typically a good sign for a program, in my opinion.

With Portland State's roster construction, they figured to go after big men, and that is indeed what they did, signing two froncourt players, both from the junior college ranks.

- Forward Collin Spickerman - "With the loss of Kyle Richardson we needed to find someone who could replace him inside and Collin is that man," said Geving. "He brings something we are trying to add to our team, which is rebounding and defending the glass. We think Collin can step right in as a rebounder and be an offensive threat for us. His best attribute is his ability to block shots. He has great timing for a 6-foot-8 guy, he moves his feet well and can protect the rim for us.

- Forward Braxton Tucker - "Braxton is another guy that is a great athlete. The biggest thing he adds for us is his ability to rebound and defend bigger guys inside. He fills a need of adding more size and depth to our front line."

The Vikings have a deep and talented backcourt, so it makes sense that they would go for JUCO big men in this class.

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  1. With this recruiting class Sac St definitely has to be the favorite in the Big Sky next year.

  2. The recruiting class isn't the reason why Sac will be a top team in the Sky. This is a good class, but not the best in the Sky. Ubaja and Stuteville are both great finds and Herrick eventually will turn into a Max Jacobsen like center, but most of the guys in this class will not be contributing to a run for the Hornets. The Hornets only lost one player (who was averaging significant mins) from their 2013-2014 squad. The backcourt of Garrity and McKinney is the biggest reason for a Hornet run next season. However, the Championship could also run through Flagstaff, Ogden, Missoula, Greeley, Cheney, Portland, as well as Sacramento. Gotta get good play from the 3 and 4 for the Hornets to have a chance. Tiffin and the older Stuteville need to bring it for the Hornets to have a chance. What is nice is that the younger Stuteville and Graves can both red shirt to get stronger and acclimatize more towards the college game. That will pay dividends in the future.