On the final day of college basketball’s Early Signing Period, St. Michael the Archangel (Baton Rouge) four-star wing Jacob Evans signed a National Letter of Intent to Cincinnati in a ceremony in his school’s library.
Watch Scout’s video of Evans thanking those closest to him and signing below.
According to the 6-foot-5, 210-pound Evans, who originally committed to the Bearcats on Oct. 14, the decision is one he’s been at peace with and excited about for some time.
“Their playing style, I feel like it fits me to a tee,” Evans told reporters Wednesday afternoon. “The coaching, the way he coaches up on defense, tight, getting in transition and driving. Just the character around the program. They’re a winning program, and I always dedicate myself to be a winner. That’s why I chose Cincinnati.”
Evans is also ready to join forces with fellow Cincinnati commit Justin Jenifer, a three-star point guard from Maryland. In fact the two had a chance to bond during various summer camps this summer.
“Justin Jenifer, I saw him at Pangos out in California and I also saw him at (NBPA) Top 100,” Evans recalled. “He’s a point guard that looks to set up his scorers and wings and bigs. I feel like me and him will play alongside each other well.”
As a junior Evans led St. Michael to the second round of the Louisiana 4A state playoffs while averaging 17.5 points, 7.2 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 3.5 steals.
His high school coach Drew Hart knows Evans’ potential and is trying to best prepare him for the jump to college ball, even if Hart currently deploys Evans a bit out of position at the point.
“He’s our leader, and I told him that when he came in,” Hart told TSD in August. “He couldn’t play up his freshman year, which he wasn’t ready to do anyway, but I told him starting sophomore year you’re going to run the point. A lot of people kinda thought it was crazy, but I’d seen him when he was younger playing in the little summer leagues and he could handle the ball. Just because he was tall didn’t mean I needed to stick him under the goal.
“He formed himself as a leader last year, and I expect everybody out there to watch him. If he’s going hard, then they’re expected to go hard. It’s his senior year now. I’m going to challenge him as hard as I possibly can. I have to help him get ready for that transition to the next level.”
Evans’ St. Michael squad opened their 2014-15 season Tuesday night against local power Madison Prep and Brandon Sampson, Scout’s top-rated player in Louisiana. Madison Prep won the ballgame 56-46, but Evans, Scout’s No. 100 overall player in 2015, won the head-to-head of four stars, pouring in a team-high 23 points and pulling down nine rebounds.
Afterward the opposing coach heaped plenty of praise on Evans.
“Jacob’s good. He’s highly skilled,” Madison Prep coach Jeff Jones said. “Everything we threw at him, he had an answer for it. Half the time we thought he was going to miss it, he made it. I mean there’s no secrets why he’s going to Cincinnati. Mick Cronin didn’t come down here and pick up a dud.”
Below is more Scout footage from Evans’ signing ceremony, where he discusses making the transition, why it was important for him to sign early and much more.