Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Iona's Men/Women Recruiting Recap

Here's the latest in a series looking at incoming players to conference teams this season.

Up now ...


- Randy Dezouvre, 6-5 forward from Montreal, Quebec, transfer from Monroe Community College.

He averaged 11 points and 5.3 rebounds per game at Monroe this past season. Monroe finished the season as the No. 7 ranked NJCAA Division I squad, earning their second straight Region XV championship.

- Michael Glover, 6-7 forward, transfer from the College of Eastern Utah, a junior college in Price, Utah.

He averaged 17.3 points and 6.9 rebounds per game this past season. Coming out of high school he signed a letter of intent to attend Seton Hall before opting to attend junior college. He played a year at the prep school level at Boys to Men Academy in illinois, helping lead that program to a prep school national title in 2007.

- Javon James, 6-4 guard/forward, Patterson (N.J.) Catholic H.S.

He averaged 5.7 points, 4.8 assists and 3.6 rebounds this past season.

James originally committed to Fordham, but was released from his commitment there after last season's interim coach, Jared Grasso, was not retained. Grasso then signed on as an assistant at Iona and James followed.

Your blogger saw James play several games in this past June's GymRat Challenge AAU tournament, and was highly impressed. James is a multi-talented player capable of playing any of the three perimeter positions at the college level.

- Aleksander Kresic, 6-7 forward, Huntington (West Va.) Prep School.

He averaged 10.0 points and 6.0 rebounds per game this past season.

Some sites list him as 6-8 and 210 pounds. He is a native of Serbia, and is described as a prototypical European-style big man that can shoot the ball from the outside.

- Sean Armond, 6-2 guard, Central Jersey Each One Touch One Academy.

He averaged 28.0 points per game this past season at the prep school level.

"We're extremely excited to have Sean on board next season," said Iona coach Tim Cluess. "Sean is a fine young man that adds scoring dimension to an already talented roster and we look forward to having him in the program this fall."

Armond has been described as having an outstanding long-range shot. As a high school senior he averaged 27.0 points, 12 rebounds and four assists per game at Jacqueline Onassis H.S. in Manhattan.

- Ra'Shad James, 6-2 guard, transfer from St. Thomas Aquinas College in Sparkill, N.Y.

James averaged 16.6 pints, 4.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists at the Division II level last season.

As a transfer, James will sit out the coming season but can practice with the Gaels. Reports indicate that he will not be on scholarship for the coming season, but is expected to become a scholarship player for the 2011-12 season.

ANALYSIS: The Gaels were the MAAC's deepest team in the league last season. Despite the early departures of Rashard McGill (last year's 8th leading scorer) and Keon Williams (11th in scoring), and graduation losses of Jon Huffman and Milan Prodanovic, the incoming group all but ensures Iona will have a capable bench again this season. Four of the five incoming eligible players are already at least a year beyond high school. Dezouvre and Glover both come in as juniors after two seasons of junior college ball, while Kesic and Armand each have a post-high school year of prep experience. James is the only incoming player coming directly from high school, and he is already physically equipped for the college game.


- Sabrina Jeridore, a 6-4 center from Francis Lewis H.S. in Queens

She averaged 10.1 points, 10.8 rebounds and 5.2 blocks per game as a senior this past season.

"I feel she has all the tools to be one of the top centers in the MAAC for years to come," said Iona coach Tony Bozzella.

- Shonice Hawkins, a 5-6 guard from St. Anthony's H.S. in Jersey City, N.J.

She averaged 13.4 points, 4.3 assists and 2.1 steals per game this past season.

"Shnice is a dynamic, athletic guard who will be able to play both guard positions for us and be very effective in our defensive pressure," said Bozzella.

ANALYSIS: The Gaels graduated their two best players from last season, 6-1 center Anna McLean and 5-8 guard Thazina Cook (who regoins the program as an assistant coach). Jeridore and Hawkins appear to be logical replacements at those two spots. Jeridore will provide a stellar defensive presence because of her height and rare shot-blocking ability. Hawkins, by all accounts, is an athletic approximation of Cook. Don't expect either to immediately duplicate what the two graduated players did this past season, but they both look to be potential standouts at some point in the not-so-distant future.

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