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Conference Recruiting Update: Mid-American

Akron Zips

Antino Jackson | 5′-11″ | PG | Cypress Springs (TX)|
Jimond Ivey | 6′-3″ | SG | Glenville (OH)|

The Zips were quiet during the early signing period, and nabbed two guards for the regular signing period.

In-state guard Jimond Ivey had the ability to play both guard slots as  a high schooler. Ivey is reputed to be a scorer that has strong athleticism. He was an honorable mention all-state player that may be somewhat of a sleeper. From the Houston area, quick lead guard Antino Jackson also pledged. Jackson was an all-district player, and averaged 19 points, 4 assists and 3 rebounds during his senior year.

Ball State Cardinals

Jeremie Tyler | 6′-1″ | SG | Arsenal Tech (IN)|
Francis Kiapway | 6′-3″ | SG | St. Thomas More (CT)|
Sean Sellers | 6′-6″ | SF | Greensburg (IN)|
Rashaun Richardson | 6′-8″ | PF | Arsenal Tech (IN)|
Bik Gill | 6′-8″ | PF | Owens CC (OH)|

With plenty of talent in their backyard, Ball State didn’t stray far from the beaten path in their ’14 recruiting haul. Given the talent in the state of Indiana, Ball State fans have to be happy that two recruits in this class, guard Jeremie Tyler and forward Sean Sellers, were both named the Indiana All-Star team. Tyler shot 59% from the floor and scored 16 points per game for a nationally ranked state championship team. Sellers scored just under 2,000 points in high school, and finished with 20 points per game as a senior. He also collected a state championship to close out high school.

A teammate of Tyler, Rashaun Richardson was beset by injuries as a senior. He also played behind Kentucky signee Trey Lyles in the post. Still, Richardson is athletic and can run, and eventually could find a future in Ball State’s frontcourt. Junior college big man Bik Gill will start of ahead of Richardson on the newcomer depth chart, as he averaged 15 points 8 rebounds and 2 blocks during his sophomore season in junior college. He’s a native of Canada that will be capable of playing immediately for the Cardinals. A fellow native of Canada, Francis Kiapway played in the tough New England Prep School ranks. Head coach James Whitford called Kiapway one of the best shooters he has seen in the high school ranks.

Bowling Green Falcons

Floridian point guard Bernard Edwards inked during the early signing period, prior the head coach change at Bowling Green, from Louis Orr to Chris Jans, a former Wichita State assistant. Edwards had interesting bloodlines as the son of a former Ohio State football player, but re-opened his recruitment.

Buffalo Bulls

Lamonte Bearden | 6′-2″ | PG | Germantown (WI)|
Mory Diane | 6′-3″ | SG | Detroit Country Day (MI)|
Bobby Frasco | 6′-4″ | SG | Prospect (IL)|
Raheem Johnson | 6′-9″ | PF | Barton CC (KS)|
Ikenna Smart | 6′-10″ | C | New Garden Friends (NC)|

Head coach Bobby Hurley is wasting no time in remaking the Buffalo program in his image. He landed what could be used as an entire lineup during the ’14 recruiting cycle, signing three players early and adding two more late.

The headliner of the class is clearly point guard Lamonte Bearden. He was considered by many as a high-major talent that can help Buffalo in short order. He led his high school team to three straight state championships in high school, though his senior year was slightly marred by off the court issues. Bearden impressed Hurley with his court vision and feel for the game. Alongside of Bearden in the backcourt, Mory Diane was a four year varsity player in Michigan, and is a smooth guard that can create offense. He was a key player on a loaded team during his senior season.

Post Raheem Johnson also inked with Bearden and Diane during the early signing period. He averaged 11 points and 8 rebounds a sophomore, and at 250 pounds he is a sizable interior player capable of blocking shots. For the long-term, Ikenna Smart was an interesting addition. He averaged 13 points and rebounds per game as a senior, and is still improving. The last commit in the class was Bobby Frasco. He should provide perimeter scoring pop for the Bulls as a knockdown outside shooter, and is reported to also be a tough and intelligent player.

Central Michigan Chippewas

Luke Meyer | 6′-10″ | PF | Addison (MI)|

A big man that can shoot, Luke Meyer verbally committed to the Chippewas early, and stuck to his pledge when he signed. He had a strong senior season and was named the Class C all-state team in Michigan. A versatile athlete, Meyer also won a high jump state championship while in high school.

Eastern Michigan Eagles

Tim Bond | 6′-5″ | SG | City College (MD)|
Jordan Nobles | 6′-8″ | PF | Canton (MI)|
Tristan Wilson | 6′-8 | PF | Skyline (MI)|

After landing in-state forward Jordan Nobles during the early signing period, the Eagles doubled up late by landing a duo of ’14 newcomers.

Nobles was considered by Eastern Michigan head coach Rob Murphy as a “highly skilled forward,” and Murphy also noted that Nobles has versatility and rebounds well. Joining Nobles as a frontcourt recruit, Tristan Wilson is a legacy recruit as the son of former Eastern Michigan player Theron WilsonTristan Wilson had a good senior year, averaging 14 points, 7 rebounds and 4 blocks per game. Originally headed to Jacksonville, Tim Bond elected for Eastern Michigan after the Dolphins dismissed head coach Cliff Warren. Bond was a First Team pick in the Baltimore-area, averaging 12 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists as he played on an undefeated state championship team. He’s a versatile player that was a strong late pick up.

Kent State Golden Flashes

Gary Akbar | 6′-5″ | SF | San Jacinto College-Central (TX)|
Rosel Hurley | 6′-6″ | SG | Shaker Heights (OH)|
Raasean Davis | 6′-8″ | PF | Paulding County (GA)|

The Golden Flashes hit their targets during the early signing period, obtaining letters of intent from three prospects.

A native of Ohio, Gary Akbar finished junior college at San Jacinto, and posted 8 points and 4 rebounds per game as a sophomore. Not a long-range shooter, Akbar only made two 3-point attempts during the season. He originally pledged to Akron in high school before taking the junior college route. In-state wing Rosel Hurley is a skilled and smooth prospect. Head coach Rob Senderoff lauded Hurley’s versatility and remarked that he’ll play multiple positions due to his length and fit for Kent State’s offense. On the interior, the Golden Flashes may have a potential sleeper in Raasean Davis. An honorable mention all-state player, Davis is a sizable big man that 235 pounds that is young for his grade. Davis rates as a rebounder and true post player.

Miami RedHawks

Zach McCormick | 6′-2″ | SG | Turpin (OH)|
Roderick Mills | 6′-7″ | SF | St. Xavier (OH)|
Kalif Wright | 6′-7″ | SF | Kilgore College (TX)|
Logan McLane | 6′-8″ | PF | Greenfield School (NC)|

Staying close to home, Miami signed two local standouts during the early signing period, and then added a pair of forwards from elsewhere to complete the class.

Averaging 21 points per game as a senior, Zach McCormick was selected as an honorable mention all-state player in Ohio. He is a combo guard that picked the RedHawks over conference rival Ohio. A long wing, Roderick Mills led the Greater Catholic League in Cincinnati in scoring at 18 points per game, to go with 6 rebounds. Not surprisingly, he was named a first team all conference player.

After leading his school to a state runner-up finish, Logan McLane was named to the 1A Boys All-State team for North Carolina’s Independent Schools. He is a skilled shooter for his size. On a strong junior college team, 220 pound forward Kalif Wright was a late pick-up. He posted 10 points and 5 rebounds per game as a sophomore.

Northern Illinois Huskies

None

Ohio Bobcats

Kendall Crute | 6′-2″ | PG | North Cobb Christian (GA)|
Nehemias Morillo | 6′-6″ | SF | Monroe CC (NY)|
Rodell Wiggington | 6′-7″ | SF | Central Florida CC (FL)|

Prior to jumping ship for Boston College, former head coach Jim Christian had four recruits sign during the early period. The most touted member of the class, power forward Tariq Owens, jumped ship from the class. Former North Dakota State head coach Saul Phillips took the helm at Ohio, and was expected to attempt to retain the three remaining signees.

Guard Kendall Crute was a second team Class A pick in Georgia, and he provides versatility given his ability to play both guard slots. He was considered a top-30 prospect in his talent-rich state. Two junior college forwards hail from a pair of elite junior college programs. A big wing, Nehemias Morillo is originally from the Dominican Republic and carries a reputation of being skilled and versatile. He posted strong sophomore stats, averaging 12 points, 6 rebounds and 4 assists. Posting an almost 50% field goal percentage, native Canadian Rodell Wiggington scored 16 points and grabbed 6 rebounds per game in the tough Florida junior college ranks.

Toledo Rockets

Kamau Stokes | 5′-11″ | PG | City College (MD)|
Cuyler “Stuckey” Mosley | 6′-3″ | SG | Timber Creek (FL)|
Kurt Hall | 6′-6″ | SF | North Chicago (IL)|

Addressing three perimeter positions, Toledo added some depth in their 2014 recruiting class.

From Florida, Cuyler “Stuckey” Mosley had a tremendous senior season, in which he averaged 21 points, 7 rebounds and 3 assists per game. He broke the 1,000 barrier at Timber Creek, and was a Fourth Team All-Orlando selection. With in excess of a dozen scholarship offers, Mosley is the most heavily recruited player in the Rockets’ class. Well-traveled after playing at three different high schools, Kamau Stokes won at every step of the way in high school. He capped high school with a Maryland 3A state championship, and averaged 15 points, 7 assists and 4 rebounds. He was a high school teammate of Eastern Michigan-bound Tim Bond. A Second team 3A all-state pick, Kurt Hall is a versatile combo forward who reportedly has a good combination of strength and quickness. Hall has physical gifts that the Toledo coaching staff will likely enjoy working with.

Western Michigan Broncos

Thomas Wilder | 6′-3″ | PG | Quakerdale Prep (IA)|
Drake Lamont | 6′-9″ | C | American Heritage (FL)|

The Broncos inked a pair of prospects during the early signing period, which will address some of their needs for the future.

A powerful big man, Drake Lamont will have the chance to succeed at Western Michigan. He was named to the All-Broward County team as a senior, after averaging 14 points, 10 rebounds, and 3 blocks per game for a state championship team. Thomas Wilder has good size as a point guard, and is a native of Illinois that finished high school in Iowa. Wilder drew high marks from head coach Steve Hawkins for his passing and defensive ability.

About K.J. Hassenstab

K.J. Hassenstab is the publisher of the College Basketball Newcomers Guide book and Hoopniks.com. He founded Hoopniks.com in 2009, and has contributed to SlamOnline, Dime Magazine's HighSchoolHoop.com, and NBCSports.com, along with other publications in the past. Hassenstab has covered grassroots, high school and basketball recruiting for over a decade. Follow on Twitter, @Hoopniks.

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