PITTSBURGH – Duquesne University head men’s basketball coach Ron Everhart has announced the signing of combo guard Johnny Higgins (Baltimore, Md./Randallstown/Notre Dame (Mass.) Prep) to a National Letter of Intent.
The 6-1, 185-pound Higgins is the first fall signee for the 2008-09 recruiting class.
Higgins led Randallstown (Md.) High School to back-to-back state championships as a sophomore and junior before enrolling at Notre Dame Prep as an undergraduate and helping the Crusaders - coached by current Duquesne assistant Bill Barton - to the 2007 Prep School National Championship. Higgins, who scored 28 points in Notre Dame Prep’s 114-94 win over Bridgton (Maine) Academy in the title game, is completing his postgraduate year at Notre Dame Prep.
“I’m thrilled to have Johnny as part of our program,” said Everhart. “He’s a tough kid who can play a variety of positions. He’s getting better and better by proving himself against some of the top guards in the country day-in and day-out at Notre Dame Prep.
Johnny’s addition to our roster comes at a perfect time since we won’t have [senior guards] Reggie Jackson and Gary Tucker next season. ”
Higgins, who is ranked as the 14th-best prospect in New England and the No. 3 prospect in Massachusetts by the New England Recruiting Report, averaged 14.0 points and 7.0 assists per game last year. He teamed with Kansas State standout freshman forward Michael Beasley and Duquesne freshman forward Damian Saunders in helping Notre Dame Prep to a 32-3 record. Notre Dame Prep, which began this season ranked third in the national preseason prep school poll, is off to a 4-0 start this season.
Johnny is a proven winner,” said Barton of his former player. “When it comes to winning games he is on the level of other great guards I coached at Notre Dame Prep like Carl Krauser [formerly at Pittsburgh], Will Blalock [formerly at Iowa State] and Gary Ervin [Arkansas]. He’s a competitor who will do whatever it takes to win games.”
Higgins, a Baltimore native, averaged 27.8 points, 6.3 assists, 6.3 rebounds and 3.2 rebounds per game in leading Randallstown to a class 2A state title in 2005-06. As a sophomore, he averaged 15.5 points, 5.2 assists, 5.4 rebounds and 2.1 assists in helping Randallstown to the class 3A state championship.
Higgins also considered Virginia Tech, Rhode Island and Old Dominion - among others - prior to signing with Duquesne.