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Forward Junior Etou commits to Rutgers

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With the hiring of Eddie Jordan as head basketball coach, Rutgers has finally been able to get to work on the recruiting trail in the aftermath of five players deciding to leave the program.

Coach Jordan picked up his second commitment on Wednesday, as 6-7 power forward Junior Etou announced his decision to attend Rutgers.

Etou, who attends Bishop O’Connell High School in Arlington, Va., also held offers from schools such as Cincinnati, Clemson, Washington and Xavier. Etou played his travel basketball with DC Assault, a program with connections to both Jordan and Rutgers associate head coach David Cox.

And according to the story from ScarletReport.com, the connection between Etou and Jordan played a role in his decision.

“He played for Eddie with one of our programs before [Jordan] went to the Lakers,” said DC Assault coach Damon Handen. “That’s where that relationship comes from. It’s a good start for Eddie, because he’ll play very hard for Rutgers.”

With the five transfers and the graduation of Austin Johnson the Scarlet Knights are in need of players to help junior guard Myles Mack in their lone season in the American Athletic Conference before joining the Big Ten in 2014.

If Etou is cleared to play he will certainly help Rutgers from a talent standpoint, but there are concerns as pointed out by Jerry Carino of Gannett New Jersey.

There are concerns, however, about his academic profile and his ability to qualify through the NCAA Clearinghouse. His age is also unclear; there was controversy within Virginia prep circles in December over whether the Congo native is 18 or 20 years old, although that would not affect his collegiate status.

Etou is the second player to join the Rutgers program since the hiring of Jordan, with junior college point guard D’Von Campbell being the first.

Photo credit: MaxPreps.com

Raphielle also writes for the NBE Basketball Report and can be followed on Twitter at @raphiellej.

WATCH LIVE: St. Bonaventure hosts Saint Louis on NBCSN

St. Bonaventure's Denzel Gregg celebrates after they defeated St. Joseph's after an NCAA college basketball game Wednesday, Feb. 3, 2016, in Philadelphia.  (Charles Fox/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP) PHIX OUT; TV OUT; MAGS OUT; NEWARK OUT; MANDATORY CREDIT
(Charles Fox/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP)
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St. Bonaventure is looking to keep pace with the Atlantic 10’s elite as they host Saint Louis on Sunday afternoon. You can watch this A-10 contest live on NBCSN at 2:00 p.m. EST.

Coming off of a huge road win at Saint Joseph’s, the Bonnies (14-6, 6-3) have won two consecutive games with a winnable stretch of two more before a key conference clash with George Washington. The trio of Marcus Posley (19.1 ppg), Jaylen Adams (18.5 ppg) and Dion Wright (16.2 ppg) has been putting up a ton of points this season and slowing down that group will be the focal point of the Saint Louis defense.

The Billikens (8-13, 3-6) are coming off of two consecutive double-digit losses and will try to regroup on the road. Senior guard Ash Yacoubou paces the Saint Louis offense at 12.2 points per game and junior guard Mike Crawford (10.9 ppg) is the only other player averaging double-figures.

These two teams will play again on March 5 when the Bonnies head to the Midwest.

CLICK HERE to watch these games on NBC Sports Live Extra Sunday afternoon.

PREGAME SHOOTAROUND: Some conference matchups play out before football

Oregon forward Dillon Brooks, left, reacts after scoring a basket against Utah during the second half of an NCAA college basketball game in Salt Lake City, Thursday, Jan. 14, 2016. Oregon defeated Utah 77-59. (AP Photo/George Frey)
(AP Photo/George Frey)
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GAME OF THE NIGHT: Utah at No. 16 Oregon, 4:00 p.m.

From Rob Dauster’s Weekend Preview:

Utah suffered one of the worst losses I’ve seen in a while on Thursday night, when Brandon Taylor, for some unknown reason, decided to foul an Oregon State player firing up a half court prayer at the buzzer. The Utes, who are arguably the second-best team in the Pac-12, will look to bounce-back on Sunday against the best team in the Pac-12, No. 16 Oregon at 4:00 p.m.

FIVE THINGS TO WATCH FOR:

1. No. 12 SMU will attempt to stay atop the American standings as they travel to South Florida. While the Mustangs won the first matchup between these two teams at home by 14, they’ve dropped their last two games on the road.

2. A few more American contests are going down as East Carolina travels to UConn and Houston heads to Tulsa. The game between the Cougars and Golden Hurricane is especially interesting because both teams are sitting two games back of SMU and trying to make a move on the postseason.

3. No. 5 Iowa continues the soft part of the schedule as they face Illinois on the road. The Hawkeyes posted recent easy victories over Northwestern and Penn State and will be heavily favored again on Sunday.

4. Could be an intriguing game as No. 17 Miami travels to Georgia Tech. Although the Yellow Jackets aren’t a major contender in the ACC, they’ve been tough this season, especially at home. The Hurricanes fell victim to Georgia Tech last season while they were ranked by Marcus Georges-Hunt has to get back on track after a recent slump for that to happen.

5. There is an Atlantic 10 game that will be featured on NBCSN on Sunday: Saint Louis at St. Bonaventure (2:00 p.m.).

CLICK HERE to watch these games on NBC Sports Live Extra Sunday afternoon.