UMass landed a late addition to its 2014 recruiting class on Thursday as Mississippi native and forward Malik Hines committed to head coach Derek Kellogg. The news of Hines’ commitment was first reported by Alex Kline from The Recruit Scoop.
The 6-foot-9, 220-pound Hines played last season at Life Center Academy in New Jersey and took a visit this spring to Memphis. Although high-major programs were pursuing Hines, he was an academic question mark and many programs backed away.
As Daniel Malone of Mass Live points out, Hines becoming eligible for the 2014-15 season would put UMass in an interesting dilemma, as they would have one scholarship too many committed for the upcoming season.
Because of academic concerns, Hines’ eligibility for the upcoming season is in question. If he fails to qualify, he’ll have to sit out the year (like Donte Clark last seaon) and will – assuming he gets back on track in class – join the team with a scholarship for 2015. If he’s ruled eligible, coach Derek Kellogg will have some tricky roster maneuvers to make as he’ll have one too many incoming players on board for 2014.
UMass already adds Clark, center Rashaan Holloway and wing C.J. Anderson next season, so if Hines qualifies, it means someone on the roster will have to relinquish their spot on scholarship.
But until that becomes a dilemma, Hines is a nice front court pick-up for UMass this late in the game.