Pat Birt

Tulsa lands verbal commitment from South Plains College guard

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Tulsa received its second verbal commitment in the Class of 2015 Saturday evening, as South Plains College guard Pat Birt made his pledge according to Eric Bossi of Rivals.com. Birt joins fellow guard Sterling Taplin as players who have committed to joining Frank Haith’s program next summer, but unlike Taplin (who’s a high school senior) the 6-foot-5 Birt has prior experience at the Division I level.

Birt began his college career at UIC, where he averaged 6.3 points and 1.7 rebounds per game in 29 appearances in 2013-14. Birt, who shot 41 percent from the field and just under 39 percent from beyond the arc, made 15 starts and was a Horizon League All-Freshman Team selection.

“Pat has improved tremendously during his first year of college basketball,” UIC head coach Howard Moore said of Birt in March. “He has a very high ceiling in this league and I am happy for him that he is getting well-deserved recognition.”

Of Birt’s eight double-digit scoring efforts last season five came against Horizon League competition, including a 16-point night in 20 minutes of action in a loss to Green Bay. He’ll join a perimeter rotation that currently doesn’t have a senior, with junior James Woodard leading the way for the Golden Hurricane in their first season as a member of the American Athletic Conference.