Monday, August 9, 2010

Hooten: Wrapping up the summer

July recruiting period is over and we saw a lot of kids for the 2011 and 2012 classes. If all goes well we will only need to sign 3 in the 2011 class. My assistants did a great job of putting me in the right places to see the right kids this July.

Since the last time we talked there has also been a new addition to our coaching staff. Will Weaver from the University of Texas has joined the Bearkats. I am very excited to have Will on board. He brings a lot of versatility in many different areas to the program. Will can help me on a lot of different fronts, and I am looking forward to watching him grow as a recruiter and coach.

Our roster is pretty much set. I know a lot of you had a bunch of questions throughout the spring and summer months. Unfortunately due to NCAA rules and other reasons, there wasn't too much that I could say at the time. We have filled all 13 scholarships and have five walk-ons for a total of 18 players.

Only changes from last year will be Marco Cooper not returning. Marco, his family, and myself decided that it was best for Marco academically and athletically to have a change of scenery. At this time Marco has signed a scholarship to attend Our Lady of The Lake an NAIA school in San Antonio, Texas. Marco will do really well there and we wish him nothing but the best.

We really have two new additions since the last time we spoke, Marcus James from Seward County CC in Liberal, Kansas, and Konner Tucker a transfer from Wake Forest. Marcus, we actually signed a while back but due to some summer school stuff elected not to officially put it out in the media yet.

Marcus is a long 6-foot-7 forward that can really defend and rebound. Offensively he will be a lot like Preston in that his best is yet to come. He will step out and really expand his game the next two seasons. We're excited to have Marcus's toughness and athleticism. Marcus has also been well coached and knows what it takes to be successful and WIN!

Konner on the other hand, will have to sit out 2010-11 season due to transfer rules. Konner played his freshman season at Lon Morris before signing with Coach Gillespie at Kentucky. After Gillespie was fired, Konner decided to be re-recruited and ended up at Wake Forest. He left last Christmas and sat out the spring semester at home. Konner has really gotten bigger and stronger, and is a lot heavier than the 175 listed, lol. A really good player who can flat out SCORE! Actually can play 3 different positions and we had to beat a couple of really good schools to land Konner.

As for me, it has been a whirlwind. Everything from finishing our schedule to the simplest things like arranging our offices, paper work, academic assignments, ordering new uniforms, and the list goes on and on. I am really looking forward to getting on the floor and working with the guys. I know it will be here before you know it.

In my small amount of spare time, I have done a lot with my wife and 2 small children. Of course I have found time to watch my Texas Rangers. I will be there this week to watch them play the Yankees, 10th and 11th. If I remember correctly in one of my first articles, I told you all that the Rangers would win the pennant and make a run at the World Series. It looks like my prediction may stand up!!!! What I would do to have the Rangers and the Braves in the World Series.

Let's all get ready to support the Fall sports and come out to watch the BEARKATS. This is a good year to get back on the Commissioner’s Cup train. Come see us anytime, will start working out on August 30th with weights, conditioning, and individual workouts. October 16th will be here before you know it. Still need to find 2 more games to finish up our schedule. It's going to be a pretty tough one, but one that I feel will prepare us for SLC play. Take care.

--Jason Hooten
Men’s basketball head coach

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