At the end of May first-year Illinois State head coach Dan Muller signed his first player as a head coach in Canadian guard Kaza Keane.
According to multiple outlets, Sunday brought the first verbal commit of the 2013 class as Proviso East guard Paris Lee committed to Illinois State.
Lee, a 5-10 left-handed point guard, helped lead Proviso East to an Illinois Class 4A state runner-up finish last season and plays his AAU basketball with the famous Mac Irvin Fire.
“I like to bring energy,” remarked Lee to Jim Benson of the Bloomington Pantagraph. “Defense gets me started. When I’m in the game I’m not looking to score. I like to defend first and if the shot comes it does … but, trust me, I can knock down open shots.”
Lee averaged 12 points per game for Proviso East, and in five games at the EYBL Finals at the Nike Peach Jam this weekend averaged 9.6 points, 2.8 assists and 2.6 steals per game.
Those Peach Jam averages were all improvements when compared to his numbers through the first four rounds of play, in which he averaged 6.3 points, 1.4 assists and 1.3 steals per contest.
According to the Pantagraph, Lee also held offers from Northern Illinois, Southern Illinois, Western Michigan and Loyola (IL).
With Nic Moore transferring to SMU the Redbirds needed reinforcements at the point, and with the additions of Keane and now Lee they’ve added two needed pieces.
Photo credit: Darrell Goemaat/Chicago Tribune
Raphielle is also the assistant editor at CollegeHoops.net and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.
Nic Moore scored 18 of his 25 points in the second half and added 11 assists as No. 16 SMU knocked off Gonzaga in Moody Coliseum on Saturday night, 69-60.
The Zags got 20 points and 16 boards from Domantas Sabonis, but Kyle Wiltjer scored just four points and shot 2-for-17 from the floor.
It wasn’t pretty.
And it may have been the end of Gonzaga’s NCAA tournament hopes.
Entering Saturday, the Zags had an RPI in the mid-60s, enough to keep them in the bubble conversation but not enough to make them anything more than a team that will be projected to end up on the cut-line.
The issue is a complete lack of quality wins on their résumé. Gonzaga beat UConn in the Bahamas. That’s a borderline top 50 win. They beat Washington, another borderline top 50 win. Beyond that? They swept Pepperdine, beat Tennessee and own a win over Montana. None of those are top 100 wins, and that’s why the SMU game was such a big deal. The Mustangs are a top 25 team. This was a road game. This win was the kind of thing that the Zags could pin at the top of their profile.
But Wiltjer didn’t show up, the Zags had no answer for Moore and they’ll head back to Spokane needing, in all likelihood, to win the WCC’s automatic bid if they want to dance.
Cal picked up a big win over Oregon State in Haas Pavilion on Saturday night, and the exclamation point was this emphatic dunk from Jaylen Brown: