Bring a Program to the Games -- Two More Recruits

Written by Paul Zeise on .

Jim Ferry made it clear at the end of the season he was going to do a complete makeover of the roster and add size, skill, shooting ability and toughness.

Many first-year coaches say that -- Ferry wasn't lying. Not even a little bit.

That's why I titled this post "Bring Your Programs to the Games" because Ferry has changed this roster so much, there aren't many guys you will recognize once the games begin.

Today he announced the signing of two more recruits and here is a copy of the news release....


PITTSBURGH - Duquesne University head men's basketball coach Jim Ferryannounced that 6-8 junior college transfer Dominique McKoy (Atlanta, Ga./Cowley College) and 6-6 Charles "L.G." Gill (Chesterfield, Va./Benedictine College Prep) have signed National Letters of Intent, making them the sixth and seventh members of the 2013-14 recruiting class.

McCoy recorded 22 double-doubles on his way to averaging 14.2 points and 11.5 rebounds per game in his one season at Cowley College in Arkansas City, Kansas. He scored 20 or more in a game six times and pulled down 15 or more rebounds seven times in helping the Tigers to a 21-11 record overall and 15-3 mark in the Jayhawk Conference. McKoy earned first team all-conference and second team all-region honors. Fellow DU signee Tra'Vaughn White, the Jayhawk Conference MVP, was also a first team all-conference pick.

McKoy, a native of Atlanta, Ga., began his career at Rhode Island where he averaged 3.1 points and 2.1 rebounds in 30 games in 2011-12. He made his first collegiate start against Duquesne in January of that season.

"Dominique played for an outstanding program at Cowley where he was well-coached by Tommy De Salme and his staff," said Ferry. "Dominique brings size, maturity and a nose for the basketball to this year's recruiting class. His versatility will help with our depth and his experience is something that will be really valuable with such a young roster."

Gill averaged 14.1 points and 8.3 rebounds in helping Richmond, Va. Benedictine College Prep (31-4) to the Virginia Independent Schools Athletic Association (VISAA) Division I state championship. He averaged 17.0 ppg. in three playoff wins. The versatile forward participated in both the slam dunk and 3-point shooting contests, winning the latter, at the 804 All-Star Game in Richmond in late March.

"L.G. has developed multiple skills that make him a legitimate threat from the perimeter," said Ferry. "He has good length which will help us defensively and he can also shoot the ball from deep. He'll allow us to play a little bigger on the wing. L.G. is a quality person who played for a proven winner under coach [Robert] Churchwell at Benedictine.

"I'm really excited about what both Dominique and L.G. will add to our program."

McKoy and Gill join freshman G Desmond Ridenour (Cleveland Heights, Ohio/M.A.C.K. Prep), freshman F Jordan Robinson (Toronto, Ontario/Quality Education Academy), freshman F Isaiah Watkins (Toronto, Ontario/St. Benedict's Prep), freshman C Darius Lewis (Lexington, Ky./IMG Academy) and junior college transfer G Tra'Vaughn White (Kansas City, Kan./Independence CC) to form the 2013-14 recruiting class.

Transfer shooting guard Micah Mason (Natrona Heights, Pa./Highlands/Drake), will also be part of the men's basketball program this fall. Mason, who played at Drake last season, will sit out the 2013-14 season per NCAA transfer rules. He will be able to practice with the team.

The newcomers join 6-8, 220-pound Ovie Soko (London, England/Bethel HS/UAB), who sat out last season following his transfer from UAB, to give the Dukes nine new roster members for 2013-14.


L.G. Gill         F   6-6  195  Fr. 14.1   8.3  Chesterfield, Va./Benedictine College Prep
Darius Lewis      C  6-11  240  Fr. 13.0  10.0  Lexington, Ky./IMG (Fla.) Academy
Dominique McKoy   F   6-8  215  Jr. 14.2  11.5  Atlanta, Ga./South Atlanta HS (Cowley CC)
Desmond Ridenour  G   6-2  180  Fr. 17.0   3.0  Cleveland Heights, Ohio/M.A.C.K. (N.C.) Prep
Jordan Robinson   F   6-8  235  Fr. 18.0  14.0  Toronto, Ontario/Quality Education (N.C.) Academy
Isaiah Watkins    F   6-8  220  Fr.  8.0   8.7  Toronto, Ontario/St. Benedict's (N.J.) Prep
Tra'Vaughn White  G  5-10  190  Jr. 25.9   5.5  Kansas City, Kan./Washington HS (Independence CC)

Micah Mason+      G   6-2  175  So. *5.4  *1.2  Natrona Heights, Pa./Highlands HS (Drake)
+ - Mason will sit out the 2013-14 season following his transfer from Drakeand will have three seasons of eligibility remaining
* - stats listed from Drake in 2012-13

Ovie Soko+        F   6-8  220  Sr. *8.3  *6.8  London, England/Bethel (Va.) HS (UAB)
+ - Soko will  be eligible in 2013-14 after sitting out last seasonfollowing his transfer from UAB (practiced with the team last year)
* - stats listed from UAB in 2011-12

Desmond Ridenour   RIDE-en-ow-er
Tra'Vaughn White   TRAY-von
Ovie Soko          O-vee   SO-ko


Now, if Mason gets a waiver because he transferred for medical reasons it will mean that the Dukes will have nine new players next year -- and give than they lost two to graduation and five more of the "get on with life's work" variety - the Dukes will basically be Derrick Colter, Jerry Jones, Jeremiah Jones, Marmadou Datt and a bunch of guys who are in their first year with the team.

Yes, there will be growing pains and yes bringing a new roster together takes time BUT I really like what he has added -- he has indeed added size, he has add some shooters and a few point guard who can handle the ball as well.

I expect the team to be more versatile, I expect the team to be able to play big and defend big, I expect the team to improve signiificantly, though tangible results may not come until a few weeks into the season given this team's relative lack of experience.


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