2003 WAC Basketball: Other Incoming Players
The Western Athletic Conference has a bevy of talented and highly touted recruits that were signed over the past recruiting year. However, those players are not the only source of incoming skill to invigorate next season’s WAC basketball programs. The following list provides a thorough overview of several walk-ons, redshirts, and players that sat out last season due to transfer or qualification issues:
Luke Dobbins, 6-1, 185 lb, Northeastern Oklahoma A&M (Miami, OK)
This past season at NEO, Dobbins averaged 11 points, 6 assists and 3 rebounds per contest. He shot 49 percent from the three point line, 89 percent from the charity stripe, and had an assist to turnover ratio of 3 to 1. He signed with Southwest Missouri State out of high school and started ten games as a freshman, averaging 5.3 points, 3.8 assists and 1.1 rebounds per game. He then redshirted the next season due to injury and transferred to NEO. Dobbins turned down several scholarship offers in order to walk-on at Tulsa and was evaluated by Oral Roberts, Southwest Texas State and Louisiana-Lafayette. He scored 2,262 points in his career at Tahlequah High School, a large-school classification record in Oklahoma. Dobbins averaged 23 points per game for his high school career, was selected to the Daily Oklahoman Super Five Team and was named First-Team All-State and Player of the Year in the Metro Lakes Conference and in District Three.
“Luke is a good shooter and a hard worker,” NEO head coach Jason Turk stated. “He is a very strong kid that has a lot of court savvy.”
Duke Biggers, 6-2, 185 lb, Mercer Island High School (Mercer Island, WA)
Biggers is a walk-on guard that did not play last season. He averaged nine points, four boards and four assists per game as a senior, leading Mercer Island to a 23-5 record and state runner-up finish. As a junior, he helped his team to a 24-5 mark and third-place honors. Biggers was the captain of his high school squad and AAU team, and was a two-time All-State honorable mention.
Ashley Knowlton, 6-0, 165 lb, West Valley Junior College (2001-02)
Knowlton missed the entire 2002-03 season after tearing ligaments in his left knee during practice on October 20, 2002. The senior had established himself as a potential backup point guard. He played for West Valley for one season, helping lead them to a conference championship, and was coached by Bob Burton, currently an assistant at Fresno State. Knowlton played as a freshman at Portland State, appearing in 18 games
Shantay Legans, 5-10, 165 lb, University of California (1999-02)
Legans transferred to Fresno State after three productive seasons at Cal and will likely step in as the starting point guard. He established himself as one of the Pac-10’s best point guards in his three years, playing in 95 games, starting 79 and averaging 9.0 points, 4.1 assists and 2.4 rebounds in his California career. He helped lead the Bears to two consecutive NCAA Tournament berths, including 2001-2002 when they went 23-9 and lost in the second round to Pittsburgh. While at Cal, Legans connected on 37 percent of his attempts from beyond the arc and 84 percent of his free throws. He also cracked Cal’s top 10 in steals in 2001-2002.
Curry Lynch, 6-2, 180 lb, Virginia City High School (Virginia City, NV)
Lynch was invited to walk-on to the Nevada basketball team this spring after a stellar senior season. He received very minimal recruiting attention due to playing in Class 1A. He was a First-Team All-NevadaPrep.com selection as a senior, averaging 21.6 points, 8 rebounds and 6 assists per game as the Muckers went 27-4 and reached the 1A state tournament semifinals before losing in overtime to Lake Mead Academy. Lynch was a four-year starter and All-Northern 1A performer at Virginia City.
Marcelus Kemp, 6-3, 200 lb, Franklin High School (Seattle, WA)
Kemp averaged 19.5 points and 5.3 rebounds as a senior, before breaking his ankle in the playoffs. He subsequently redshirted as a freshman at Nevada. As a junior, he averaged 18 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists. Kemp was rated the ninth-best shooting guard in nation by Rivals in 2002, and the 47th best player overall. He was also offered by Utah and Gonzaga during high school, and visited Oregon State, St. Joseph and Western Kentucky.
Demarshay Johnson, 6-9, 202 lb, Oakland Tech High School (Oakland, CA)
Johnson prepped at Christian Faith Center after his senior year and was rated as the seventeenth best power forward in the nation in 2002. He originally signed with Oregon State, but did not qualify academically. Johnson then enrolled at Nevada without being cleared by NCAA, but is reported to be eligible for 2003.
Coby Karl, 6-4, 175 lb, Homestead High School (Mequon, WI)
Karl, the son of Milwaukee Bucks coach George Karl, redshirted last season. He is a very smart player who understands the game very well. As a high school senior, he earned first-team all-conference and honorable mention all-state honors after averaging 17.5 points and 5.7 rebounds per game. He hit 75 percent of his free throw attempts and 35 percent of his 3-point shots. Karl was also selected to play in the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association Division I All-Star game in 2002, after finishing second in the North Shore Conference in scoring as a senior. As a junior, he averaged eight points and two rebounds per game.
Larry Davidson, 6-9, 230 lb, St. Edwards (East Gosford, Australia)
Davidson redshirted last season and can really shot the ball. The skilled big man led St. Edwards to a third-place finish at the state finals and was named to the All-NSW Combined Catholic Schools Team, as well as being named the Best Offensive Player for his high school. He also competed for the Australian Institute of Sport, an elite team made up of the top amateur players in Australia, and led New South Wales to a gold medal in the Australian Under-20 Championships. Davidson was voted MVP of the tournament and was a member of the all-tournament team after averaging 16.3 points and 8.4 rebounds during the tournament.
Barry Thompson, 6-6, 195 lb, Odessa College (Odessa, TX)
Thompson sat out last season due to not qualifying. As a sophomore at Odessa College, he averaged 17.5 points, 10.5 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game, and was listed as a Top 10 JUCO power forward. As a freshman, Thompson averaged 15.2 points, 6.1 rebounds and 2.3 assists, while shooting 50 percent from the field and 35 percent from the arc.
SAN JOSE STATE:
Marquin Chandler, 6-6, 210 lb, George Washington (2000-02)
Chandler decided to transfer from George Washington following his sophomore season, when he averaged 6.1 points, 3.7 rebounds and 14.7 minutes as a reserve in seventeen games. He prepped at Newark Memorial High School, averaging 22 points, 12 rebounds and three blocked shots a game as a two-year starter, shooting 50 percent from the field, 78 percent from the line and 42 percent from three-point range as a senior. Chandler was named First-Team All-Metro by the San Francisco Examiner.
Kyle Wilson, 6-1, 180 lb, Massachusetts (2000-02)
Wilson transferred from UMass during the first semester of his sophomore year and enrolled at San Jose for the second semester. As a freshman in 2001-02, Wilson saw action in 29 games, drawing seven starts, and averaging 3.9 points and 1.3 rebounds in 16.9 minutes per appearance. He shot 30.6 percent from the field, 33.8 percent from three-point range and 75.0 percent at the foul line, while ranking third on the team in assists with 53. Wilson appeared in four games during the 2002-03 season, averaging 1.5 points and 0.3 rebounds in 4.0 minutes per game. He played for Team Canada and Canada’s Under-21 National Team in the summer of 2001, averaging 9.0 points and 4.0 assists in a four-game series against Japan. Wilson ranked as the top point guard in Canada as a high school senior, averaging 26 points and 12 assists. He once hit twelve three-pointers in one game as a prep senior and hit 42 percent from beyond the arc in his final prep season.
Chris Harmon covers University of Tulsa athletics for Tulsa SportsWeb in Tulsa, Oklahoma. He is also the Editor of the Hurricane Alert newsletter and contributes as a Recruiting Analyst to Sooner State Recruiting. Chris can be reached at Chris@TulsaSportsWeb.com.
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