Mississippi State Lands Forward

College basketball is a relationship driven business. On Sunday, Mississippi State leveraged a relationship into a commitment from a 6-foot-8 power forward.

Mississippi State assistant Robert Kirby and Winston Varnardo went to the same high school. The two have known each other a long time and it just so happens that Varnardo has a 6-foot-8 son who is a prospect. Now, Varnardo's son is property of Kirby and the Bulldogs.

Over the weekend, Jarvis Varnardo committed to Rick Stansbury's program after hearing strongly from Memphis and Tennessee. He becomes Mississippi State's second commitment as the Bulldogs received a verbal from Ben Hansbrough last week.

"This summer, he's been getting better and progressing every tournament and camp he's been in," Winston Varnardo said. At the adidas Superstar Camp in early July, Varnardo showed improvement in his game. He's a long, lean forward who works hard but needs to add weight to his frame. He's a prospect whose best days are ahead of him. His situation, physically, is similar to that of Vincent Hunter who is a forward at Arkansas. Currently, Varnardo weighs 185 pounds.

This year, Varnardo will be coached by his father at Haywood County High in Tennessee. Last season, he averaged 13 points, 8 rebounds and 8 blocks. The Bulldogs were persistent in their pursuit and that paid dividends in the end.

"They were the only one to come and show a lot of interest in him," Varnardo said. "They were here everyday last week [for open gym]. Just being there and showing that they want you, that was big. Another big thing was that the assistant coach and I, Robert Kirby, we went to high school together. I know his family and I spent time with his family as I was growing up. I trust Coach Kirby."

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