After winning just nine games in 2014-15 there’s clearly room for improvement at Missouri. Saturday afternoon head coach Kim Anderson received verbal commitments from two junior college players he hopes are capable of helping to spark a turnaround in Columbia.
As first reported by Brad Winton of JucoRecruiting.com, John A. Logan College products Russell Woods and Martavian Payne committed to the SEC program during a campus visit. Woods is a 6-foot-8 forward who averaged 14.1 points and 7.2 rebounds per game in 2014-15, shooting 61 percent from the field.
With the Tigers needing to account for the transfer of Johnathan Williams III, the addition of Woods is an important one when it comes to their front court depth. Woods joins a front court whose most experienced player will be rising senior Ryan Rosburg, with sophomores D’Angelo Allen and Jakeenan Gant being the other returnees and incoming freshman Kevin Puryear the other newcomer.
As for the 6-foot-2 Payne, he averaged 15.7 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game this past season, shooting 43.2 percent from the field and 36.9 percent from beyond the arc. He’ll have a little more company on the perimeter than Woods will in the post, as Missouri also adds freshmen Terrence Phillips and Cullen Van Lear.
Missouri returns rising junior Wes Clark and rising sophomores Tramaine Isabel, Montaque Gill-Caesar and Namon Wright from last year’s team.