Here's another in the series looking at players joining conference programs for the coming season.
Up now ...
- KHALID HART (6-2 guard, The Sanford School, Newark, Del.): He averaged 15.7 points and 5.9 assists per game as a high school senior. His high school team won Delaware's Class D1AA division state title the last three seasons. He was named Delaware's Player of the Year last season, and played for the U.S. Virgin Island's 18-under national team. But, in a tough break, Hart recently had surgery on his right knee and will redshirt this season.
- PHILLIP LAWRENCE (6-7 forward, Mount St. Joseph's H.S., Philadelphia): No high school statistics available, but he had a strong summer of AAU ball last season that attracted numerous mid-major level offers. Said to be a skilled, versatile and athletic player. At 190 pounds, he likely needs to add a little more bulk/strength to be a significant factor.
- ERIC TRUOG (6-10 Center, Chagrin Falls, Ohio, H.S.): He averaged 22.0 points and 11.4 rebounds as a high school senior. At 240 pounds, he already has a college-ready physique. Most recruiting services ranked him either the No. 1, or No. 2 center prospect at the high school level in Ohio last season.
ANALYSIS: Marist had two needs going into the past recruiting season: height, and some help/depth at the point guard position. The Red Foxes appear to have capably filled both needs, at least for the future. Hart, who plays the point but can also score, has just been a proverbial winner and appeared likely to start the season as a key reserve until he suffered a knee injury that required surgery recently. He is expected to be a medical redshirt this season. Hard to tell about big men entering the MAAC, but there's not much out there to indicate that Truog will be anything other than a nice addition to Marist. Initially he'll back up returnee Adam Kemp. But, Kemp had off-season foot surgery and if he's at all limited, then Truog's role becomes greater right away. Lawrence, according to reports, is capable of playing either forward spot. He is long and lanky, has a variety of skills and alters shots as a defender. A year ago, Marist had only one player (Kemp) taller than 6-foot-6 who saw meaningful minutes.