Idaho coach Don Verlin addressed the media today to discuss his three spring signings, two highly anticipated high school recruits and a surprise junior college commitment who could come in and help right away at point guard.
The signings are:
Nick Blair, F, 6-4, 185 - Bishop Gorman HS, Las Vegas
Myles Franklin, PG, 6-0, 172 - Hart high school, Newhall, Calif.
Patrick Ingram, PG, 6-2, 200 - Trinity Valley Junior College, from Indianapolis.
Read on for more on Verlin's comments.
The common theme throughout Verlin's chat with the media was that all of these players are anticipated to come in and help right away. There's a glaring hole at point guard with Mike Scott's graduation, so signing two point guards isn't a surprise.
The Vandals have to replace their three leading scorers so players who can score the ball around the perimeter were a premium in Verlin's recruiting strategy.
Here are his initial comments on each player.
"Nick Blair played 6-5, three-man from Bishop Gorman. Nick is a fantastic athlete, will be the best athlete on our team. Him and Perrion Callandret are similar athletically, he’s won a number of dunk contests. He played on an unbelievable high school team, they played maybe the best basketball schedule in the united states. A freshman with his size and athleticism could come in and play immediately. He’s a guy who can really drive the ball to the basket. He can score inside, he can score outside, needs to work on his consistency from behind the arc. But we’re excited to add Nick Blair, high energy guy who we can see making an immediate impact."
You can read my story from my chat with Nick Blair here.
"He sat out last year to keep his grades in order. Big strong, physical guy who can come in and play, we think right away. Has a very good feel on how to play, good shooter, good handle on the ball. He’ll be a good player the minute he steps on campus."
"Myles is a quick, athletic guard, can really play off the ball screen. He’s a guy who can score in the lane, outside the lane, had an excellent high school career. We’re extremely to add Myles, Myles is a guy we think can come in and play right away."
I then asked Verlin on if any of these kids are going to be expected to start.
"We never promise anybody that they’re going to start, because there’s in the program who’ve worked their tails off to get that opportunity but we do anticipate them all to come in and battle for starting spots and have the opportunity to play immediately. You never tell anybody in the recruiting process they’re going to start, because then you’re telling everybody that and you can only have five starters," Verlin said.
Rejuvenating the backcourt was an emphasis for Verlin after losing three guards from last season.
"Obviously we had a big void on the perimeter and we wanted to take care of first things first and that was taking care of the guard spots and we’re still actively recruiting. Whether we add a big guy here in the future, I can’t tell you that at this point. We don’t exactly what the rest of the spring recruiting is going to be bring. We knew we had to replace some guards because we lost three starting guards from last year."
Verlin said the four signings, including Tyler Brimhalls LOI in the fall, puts the Vandals at 13 scholarships. Although he didn't rule out an opening later in the spring for another addition.
"We’re just about done at (13), we may have one more available, we don’t know yet," Verlin said. "We’re still kind of trying to make sure all of our guys are academically eligible. Just got done with meetings today and with the way our spring semester works, we’re gone so much that we got some guys catching up. We lost three seniors and Sekou so that’s four and we’ve signed four to this point right now but taking that next step as spring progresses, you never know."
Here are some highlight videos of Idaho's newest additions.
There aren't a lot of good videos on Ingram from junior college, so here's him in a dunk contest at Iowa.