Hogs Ink Straight Shooter

FAYETTEVILLE – It's official: Arkansas has netted a sorely-needed straight shooter.

Ryan McBride, a 6-foot-6, 190-pound junior college shooting guard who committed to the Razorbacks during his visit here last weekend, inked with Stan Heath's program on Thursday.

A two-time All-Coast Conference selection for Monterey (Calif.) Peninsula College, McBride had narrowed his choices to Pitt, Kansas State, Tennessee and Arkansas and also was recruited by Charlotte, Oregon State, Southern Illinois, Southern Miss, Utah State and San Jose State.

"One area we wanted to address for next year was 3-point shooting, and Ryan McBride's numbers were very impressive," Heath said. "We feel like he can give us a boost."

In Heath's third season without a postseason berth, the Hogs finished 18-12 after a 13-1 start. Southeastern Conference teams mostly played zone against Arkansas, often giving the Hogs fits because of inconsistent outside shooting.

McBride could play a big part in resolving that issue.

A native of Denver (Manual High), McBride made an immediate impact at Monterey Peninsula, leading the Coast Conference with a .533 3-point percentage while averaging 15.9 points and finishing second in the conference with a .852 free-throw percentage.

Last season, McBride shot .462 percent from 3-point range and boosted his scoring average to 21.2. He also averaged 9.5 rebounds.

"He's also a good player in other areas such as passing, defense and rebounding," Heath said.

"As soon as we get him on campus, we'll get him involved in our weight training, playing with the guys and continue working on his fundamentals."

McBride, who could not be reached for comment, is Arkansas' third signee in this year's class. He joins 6-2, 175-pound combo guard Sean McCurdy of West Port, Conn., and 6-9, 235-pound forward Cyrus McGowan of Meridian, Miss.

McCurdy missed his senior season because of a broken bone in his right foot, but averaged 15.0 points and 8.0 assists as a junior. Playing for coach Bob Hurley, the father of former Duke and NBA point guard Bobby, he helped St. Anthony (N.J.) High to a 30-0 record No. 2 national ranking by USA Today.

McGowan led Meridian High to the Mississippi Class 5A final and a 28-9 record with averages of 11.1 points, 12.3 rebounds, 4.0 blocked shots and 2.0 assists. He earned second-team All-Mississippi honors by the Jackson Clarion-Ledger.

Because junior forward Rashard Sullivan left the team on April 13, the Razorbacks have one more scholarship available.




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