Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Men's Recruiting: Fairfield Gets Much-Needed Height

Here's another in the series looking at players joining conference programs for the coming season.

Up now...


- MARCUS GILBERT (6-6 forward, Academy of the New Church, Bryn Athun, Pa.): He averaged 17 points and eight rebounds per game as a high school senior. Reports indicate that despite a relatively slender (185 pounds) build, he has the ability to play inside but can also step out and connect from the perimeter. He shot 56 percent from the floor as a high school senior, including 67 percent from inside the three-point line.

- COLEMAN JOHNSON (6-6 Forward, Paul VI School, Oak Hill, Va.): He averaged 12 points and nine rebounds per game as a high school senior. At 215 pounds, he has a college-ready build. He was a four-year starter for a very strong Paul VI program. He is also a good shot-blocker (3.5 per game last season) for his height.

- JOSIP MIKULIC (7-0 center, North Broward (Fla.) Prep): The native of Croatia originally made a commitment to attend North Carolina State before opting, instead, for Fairfield. Most sites list him as a 6-10 power forward, although Fairfield's roster lists him as a 7-footer. At 228 pounds, he is a slender big man with a variety of skills, including the ability to step out and make shots from the perimeter. He averaged 12 points, eight rebounds, three assists and two blocks per game as a high school junior. There are no stats available for his senior season.

- AMADOU SIDIBE (6-8 forward, Cardinal Hayes H.S., the Bronx): He averaged 15 points and 12 rebounds per game as a high school senior, after a senior year in which he averaged 19 points and 13 rebounds. Also a good shot-blocker, averaging three rejections per game last season.

- JUSTIN JENKINS (6-2 guard, Wings Academy, the Bronx): He averaged 18 points, 4.8 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game as a high school senior against high-caliber competition in the New York City area. Capable of playing either guard position.

- SEAN GRENNAN (6-3 guard, transfer from Seton Hall): A highly sought-after recruit after a 1,400-point high school career, he had early physical woes (appendicitis) at Seton Hall last season and only appeared in 18 games, scoring 10 total points. He will sit out the upcoming season due to transfer rules, and have three seasons of eligibility left starting with the 2013-14 season.

ANALYSIS: The Stags, without a single player taller than 6-5 who saw action last season, needed height and got plenty with four incoming recruits between 6-6 and 7-0. Mikulic showed enough to have originally been recruited at a higher level. Although he is more a "skilled" player than a "power" inside performer, his skills should fit in well with coach Sydney Johnson's Princeton-style offense. Although the program has three strong returnees in the backcourt (Derek Needham, Colin Nickerson and Desmond Wade), Jenkins looks ready to get into the playing group. And, Grennan will be a nice addition a year from now. The Stags had also received a commitment from 6-2 guard Lincoln Davis (20.2 points per game this past season at Pittsburgh Central Catholic), but Davis opted, instead, to attend prep school for the coming season but has indicated he plans to join the Fairfield program for 2013-14.

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