Haith and Staff Recruit 4-Star California Shooting Guard

4 years 2 months 1 week ago Friday, November 15 2013 Nov 15, 2013 Friday, November 15, 2013 2:55:00 PM CST November 15, 2013 in Tiger Talk
Source: News Release
By: Dave Reiter, Mizzou Athletics

Columbia - Mizzou Basketball added its second four-star recruit of the early signing period on Friday as shooting guard Namon Wright (Los Angeles / Pacific Hills), ranked No. 60 nationally by Scout.com, signed a National Letter of Intent to attend the University of Missouri and play basketball for the Tigers.

Wright joins four star forward Jakeenan Gant, a consensus Top 50 recruit nationally, who signed with Mizzou on Wednesday.

The 6-foot-4, 175-pound guard signed with Missouri after a host of West Coast offers, including hometown teams UCLA and USC. One of California's top players entering the 2013-14 season, Wright helped lead a veteran Pacific Hills High School squad to the Division IV state crown and a 29-4 overall mark a year ago, averaging 15.6 points, 7.3 rebounds and 3.1 assists per game. Wright enters his senior season ranked the No. 11 shooting guard in the class of 2014.

A big-game performer for Pacific Hills Head Coach Ivan Barahona (who is also the head coach of the El Salvador National Team), Wright scored 17 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in the state championship win over Cardinal Newman and dropped in 20 points in the semifinal victory against Bishop Montgomery. He also competed at the Pangos All-America camp the last two seasons, including in 2012, where he played alongside current Tiger, Johnathan Williams, III.

"Namon just has a great feel for the game and similar to Wes Clark, he is always on the attack, looking for a way to beat you," Haith said. "He is a bigger guard, which we like, and has great length that allows him to excel defensively. He has very good instincts and is very good at slashing and attacking the rim. His jump shot is still developing, but he can really get on a roll and will become much more consistent on the perimeter with repetition. He is still a good jump shooter and I think you will see that consistency settle in as the year continues."

The senior-to-be was named a California Division IV second team all-state selection as a junior, as well as a first team all-Alpha League and second team all-Southern Section pick. One of the winningest programs in California, Wright helped Pacific Hills to the 2012 and 2013 CIF Southern Section titles and that 2013 state title.

"This was a very good class for us and fits two needs in our program," Haith said when summing up the early signing period. "We needed some additional size and athleticism in the paint and Jakeenan is one of the country's more athletic hybrid forwards. He can run the court, finish in transition and he has the chance to be a big time presence on the defensive end. Namon gives us very good size on the perimeter and he has an attacking mentality on the offensive end. He will keep developing as a shooter, but right now he puts a lot of pressure on his opponents because of his ability to score off the bounce."

Wright becomes the third California native to play for Haith and the Tigers the last two years. He joins current junior Jabari Brown as well as former Tiger and Los Angeles native Keion Bell.

"Namon has nice upside," Scout.com National Recruiting Analyst Evan Daniels said. "He is a very good athlete and can be a good defender at the collegiate level. He also has a decent skill set on the wing. He is a capable scorer and that is an area where he is going to get better at with time. He plays really well in transition and uses his athleticism to attack the rim."

The Mizzou Basketball staff will remain active for the 2014 spring signing period.

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