VCU Sets Up Shop In Florida

Virginia Commonwealth is wearing out a path to the state of Florida. Anthony Grant's staff has deep roots in the Sunshine State and its showing. The Rams secured commitments No. 4 and 5 over the weekend.

In the past 5 years, the state of Florida has been churning out prospects. It's become a hotbed of talent and more programs are trying to invade the borders each year. When it comes to invading the state, VCU is taking it to another level.

Over the weekend, the Rams under new coach Anthony Grant, secured their 4th and 5th commitments, each from residents of the Sunshine State. Joey Rodriguez, a former UMass pledge out of Winter Park (Fla.) Lake Howell is committed. Joining him is Larry Sanders, a big man out of Fort Pierce St. Lucie.

Are the Rams really making that much news in Florida? "Yes, they definitely are," Sanders said. "Everybody knows now."

Speaking of Sanders, he averaged 13 points and 11 rebounds last year. He had offers from Western Carolina and George Washington.

"His length brings a different level for us defensively," Kareem Rodriguez, Sanders' high school coach said. "Around the basket he blocks shots and rebounds when other players make mistakes he's always had to make up for them and he's in the right spot. Offensively, for his size, he's so new to the game. It's quite impressive."

PG Joey Rodriguez
While Sanders and his size will be welcomed inside, Rodriguez is the guy who will eventually be at the controls of the helm in Richmond.

"They said they want to build on speed, quickness and toughness," Rodriguez said. "They think I'm a leader and they trust me. We all know each other in the recruiting class so that's cool. I'll be living with guys that know where I come from."

One of the common themes with the 5 guys VCU has recruited is the relationship with Grant. "I really believe in Coach Grant and what he's trying to accomplish," Rodriguez said. "This will be their first recruiting class. They have three players coming there that I know from Florida that either played with or against. I'm very comfortable with them."

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