Just a couple days after announcing the signing of three players in the Class of 2015, Mississippi State head coach Rick Ray landed his second commitment in the Class of 2016.
Four-star power forward Darius Hicks, a native of Quitman, Mississippi, made the decision to remain in his home state according to Courtney Cronin of the Clarion-Ledger. The 6-foot-7 Hicks joins guard D’Marcus Simonds as players who have verbally committed to attending the SEC school in 2016.
As for where Hicks fits into Mississippi State’s plans upon his arrival on campus, he discussed what the coaches have in mind for him with Cronin.
“Coach Ray told me he would play me as a stretch forward – kind of what I am right now,” Hicks said. “They see me as a really versatile player with my form that can stretch the floor, kind of like what they have in (junior small forward) Travis Daniels.”
With three of Mississippi State’s five juniors being power forwards, adding talent and depth to this position is a key for the program in both the 2015 and 2016 classes. Current freshman Oliver Black will help account for those personnel losses moving forward, as will 2015 signee Joseph Struggs and Hicks.
Of Mississippi State’s four seniors on the current roster just one, 6-foot-7 Roquez Johnson, is a forward with guards Trivante Bloodman, Isaiah Butler and Jeffrey Johnson being the others.