Christian Vital

(Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

UConn’s eight newcomers already competing for playing time

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STORRS, Conn. (AP) — The competition to earn playing time is already in high gear at UConn, where eight newcomers have joined the Huskies.

So far, it’s been just pickup games, limited workouts with coaches and on Thursday, their first media session.

But 6-foot-9 freshman forward Josh Carlton says everyone knows they have a chance at playing time and everyone is looking to impress.

The roster includes just two players who saw significant action during last year’s 16-17 campaign — guards Jalen Adams and Christian Vital.

Two others, Terry Larrier and Alterique Gilbert are back after sitting out most of the season with injuries.

There are four freshmen — forwards Carlton, Tyler Polley, Sidney Wilson and Isaiah Whaley. They join junior college transfers Eric Cobb and Kwintin Williams and graduate transfers Antwoine Anderson and David Onuorah.

Wilson, who transferred from St. John’s after summer school, is seeking an NCAA waiver to play this season.

Three-star wing commits to UNLV

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UNLV landed its second recruit of the week on Friday night, as Carlos Johnson, a three-star wing, announced his commitment via Twitter.

“Happy to announce my commitment to UNLV,” he tweeted.

Johnson, who attends Findlay Prep in nearby Henderson, Nevada, joins guard Christian Vital, who picked the Rebels on Wednesday night, and four-star forward Justin Jackson in the Class of 2016.

The 6-foot-4 Johnson played for the Oakland Soldiers on the grassroots circuit, averaging 12.3 points, 6.5 rebounds and 1.0 assists per game in 19 appearances in the Nike EYBL.

UNLV lands three-star 2016 guard Christian Vital

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UNLV landed a three-star guard on Wednesday night as microwave Class of 2016 guard Christian Vital announced his decision on Twitter.

The 6-foot-2 Vital attends St. Thomas More and was also a combo guard for the loaded PSA Cardinals in the Nike EYBL. Showing an ability to hit shots from the perimeter and also score in bunches quickly off the bench, Vital averaged 8.8 points, 4.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game this spring and summer in the EYBL.

Vital shot 40 percent from 3-point range and his ability to score off the bench could be very useful to UNLV early in his college career.

The commitment of Vital means that UNLV now has two commitments in the fold for the Class of 2016 as the Vital joins four-star forward Justin Jackson.