Purnell Signs Five for 2011

The ink is now dry on the signings for DePaul coach Oliver Purnell's first recruiting class. The Blue Demons signed five for the Class of 2011.

With the signing of guards Macari Brooks and Shane Larkin, wing Jamee Crockett, and big men Braeden Anderson and Derrell Robertson, Purnell has himself a group that could function together as an athletic five-man unit.

"I'm very pleased with the makeup of our first full recruiting class," said Purnell. "I think we addressed a lot of needs for next year's team. We were able to sign a guy at each position. I think we have guys that shoot the basketball, guys that have the ability to defend and overall a very athletic class."

Anderson is a 6-8, 230 lb. forward who originally hails from Alberta, Canada. Last season at Creedmoor Christian Faith Academy in North Carolina, he averaged 15 ppg and nine rebounds per game. Anderson is ranked as the fifth best Canadian player in the Class of 2011 by FlagrantFouls.com.

"Braeden Anderson is a tremendous athlete for his position," said Oliver. "He is a developing big guy who has a thirst to get better. He has great size."

Brooks gives Purnell a local recruit from the south suburbs of Chicago. The 6-2, 165 lb.guard from Rich South is a tremendous leaper.

"Macari Brooks is an outstanding athlete who is a natural scorer from all over the floor. I was very impressed with his toughness and tenacity as well," said Purnell.

Crockett is Brooks' long-time friend and fellow teammate on the Mac Irvin Fire AAU team. The 6-4, 185 lb. forward from Crete-Monee was the first to commit to Purnell for 2011.

"Jamee Crockett is probably as good an athlete as I saw all summer," Purnell said. "He's improved his ability to the outside shot. He is a tremendous runner and finisher."

Larkin gives the Blue Demons some depth in the backcourt. The 5-11, 160 lb. point guard is the son of former all-star shortstop Barry Larkin of the Cincinnati Reds. Shane averaged 19 points, 4.5 rebounds, 4.3 assists and 3.5 steals per games as a junior at Dr. Phillips High School where the Panthers advanced all the way to the state championship game last season. Larkin is ranked as the 20th best point guard in the nation by Scout.com and is regarded as the 85th best overall prospect in the country according to the RSCI rankings.

"Shane Larkin is an outstanding point guard from Orlando," Purnell shared. "He not only provides the ability to quarterback the team, but he's shown an ability to shoot the three-point shot with consistency."

Robertson brings some much needed help to the Blue Demons frontcourt. The 6-10, 235 lb. center is known as a superior shot-blocker with a vertical leap that has been reported to be from 36 to 40 inches. He shattered the record for blocked shots at the Pearland, Texas Classic AAU tournament in April. As a junior at Mendenhall High School, Robertson averaged 14 points, eight rebounds and seven blocked shots per game

"Derrell Robertson is an outstanding big athlete and has shown the ability to defend with some of the best in the country," said Purnell. "He's an outstanding shot blocker and will improve offensively in our up-tempo style."

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