Tag: Missouri Valley Conference

Fred VanVleet
Associated Press

Wichita State’s VanVleet leaves game with minor ankle sprain

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No. 10 Wichita State point guard Fred VanVleet entered Friday’s opener against Charleston Southern at less than full strength, as he’d been dealing with a hamstring injury. Unfortunately for the Shockers the All-America candidate picked up another injury in the first half of the 88-63 victory, as he left the game with a sprained ankle that head coach Gregg Marshall described as “minor.”

VanVleet, who played just three minutes Friday night, is considered to be day-to-day with the Shockers’ next games scheduled for Tuesday night at Tulsa.

Friday night freshman guards Ty Taylor II and Landry Shamet saw the most minutes off the bench amongst the Wichita State guards, with Shamet (27 minutes) scoring 13 points and Taylor (16 minutes) tallying ten. Junior John Robert Simon played just eight minutes but finished with a team-high three assists, a number matched by senior Ron Baker.

Also of note in the win was the play of forwards Anton Grady and Eric Hamilton. Grady, a grad student who transferred in from Cleveland State, accounted for 12 points and three rebounds while the freshman Hamilton added 13 points and seven boards off the bench. They’ll be two key players moving forward for a team that has to account for the loss of Tekele Cotton and Darius Carter from last season’s Sweet 16 team.

VanVleet’s status heading into Tuesday’s game will be something to keep an eye on, as Tulsa has a very good backcourt tandem of its own in seniors James Woodard and Shaquille Harrison. And even if he can go, how effective he’ll be dealing with two injuries remains to be seen.

Wichita State lands highly regarded JUCO forward Darrlyn Willis

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Associated Press
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Wichita State landed an important commitment Friday afternoon, as one of the top junior college forwards in the country announced that he’ll play his college basketball for Gregg Marshall.

6-foot-9 power forward Darryln Willis, who attends Pearl River CC in Mississippi, has signed with Wichita State. Willis, who’s from Madison, Wisconsin, picked the Shockers over Arizona State with Marquette and Mississippi State also hosting him on official visits. Oklahoma State, Alabama and LSU were also involved in Willis’ recruitment.

Willis, who’s averaging 16.0 points and 9.7 rebounds at this early point in the season, accounted for 13.8 points and 7.1 rebounds per game as a freshman. Willis shot nearly 63 percent from the field as a freshman at Pearl River, and his ability to score in the post area is an asset that will help Wichita State upon his arrival on campus.

With the Shockers losing two front court players at the end of this season in Anton Grady and Bush Wakumota, the addition of Willis is an important one for the program. Willis has the skill needed to have an immediate impact, and in his conversations with the Wichita State coaching staff that’s the expectation for him upon his arrival.

“They pretty much told me that I was a missing piece to the puzzle, and they think that I can be an instant impact player,” Willis, who took in a couple practices while on his visit, told NBCSports.com.

While Willis won’t have the opportunity to play with Wichita State’s current senior class, one that has been incredibly successful, he will get to play with some young talented players who do have eligibility remaining beyond the 2015-16 campaign.

Among those who will be asked to pick up where that successful senior class leaves off are transfers Conner Frankamp (eligible in December) and Peyton Allen, and Wichita State also has a talented freshman class that includes Landry Shamet and Markis McDuffie.

In the front court, Willis will join sophomores Shaq Morris, Rashard Kelly and Rauno Nurger next season.

Loyola (IL) lands former Colorado commit Satterwhite

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With three seniors in its perimeter rotation, adding a guard in the Class of 2016 was something Loyola (IL) likely wanted to do. Sunday Porter Moser’s program managed to do just that, as 6-foot-4 shooting guard Cameron Satterwhite announced that he’d committed to the Missouri Valley Conference program.

Satterwhite is Loyola’s first verbal commitment in the Class of 2016, and he’s a talented one at that. Satterwhite, who attends Gilbert Christian HS in Gilbert, Arizona and played for the Arizona Power program this summer, was originally a Colorado verbal commit. However things changed in the aftermath of Satterwhite suffering a torn ACL while playing in Las Vegas in July.

Satterwhite reopened his recruitment last month after reportedly being asked by Colorado to reclassify to 2017 to ensure that his knee would be back to full strength upon his arrival.

“Cam didn’t want to do that,” Ortega said to Gershon of reclassifying to 2017. “Talking to Cam and his family, they didn’t want to figure out what to do for a year as a post grad or something else. Even if it means he has to go to a lower conference.”

Of Loyola’s three seniors on the perimeter Earl Peterson and Devon Turk were the most productive last season, with Peterson averaging 8.7 points per game and Turk not far behind at 8.5 ppg. Jeff White averaged 2.9 ppg but was second on the team in assists with 82.

Satterwhite and Iowa State transfer Clayton Custer (sitting out this season) will join the perimeter rotation next season, with Milton Doyle, Donte Ingram and Ben Richardson among those who will have eligibility remaining.

Video credit: AZ Finest